Curing of freshly dug turmeric is vital to both the development of the attractive yellow colour and to enhance the characteristic aroma of this wonder spice. The process is elucidated below:
- The rhizomes and bulbs are boiled in water for to hours until froth and fumes appear.
- They are drained and sun baked for 10-15 days
- When turmeric fingers produce a metallic sound on being broken, they are said to be cured
- They are cleaned and mechanically polished in a drum
- They are then powdered and packed for sale.
The storage of the seeds is a critical part of the curing process. The rhizomes are removed and dried in the shade for 4-6 days after cleansing them. They are then preserved in underground pits, locally known as kattir.