Turmeric originates from South East Asia and has been used for more than 5,000 years in Ayurveda medicine and traditional Chinese medicine. It was brought to Europe by the Arabs and was used in the Middle Ages as a medicinal plant as well as a plant dye. Today, India is still the main producer of turmeric but almost the entire harvest is consumed within the country itself.
This perennial plant can grow up to 1m tall, and has long, petiolate, oval, pointed leaves. The flower heads are yellowy-green and sometimes purple as well.
Turmeric not only resembles ginger in taste and the same fiery spiciness, it is also often incorrectly referred to as a root - just like ginger, however, it is a rhizome.