Cinnamon is a powerful spice that has been used medicinally around the world for thousands of years. It is still used daily in many cultures because of its widespread health benefits, not to mention its distinctly sweet, warming taste and ease of use in recipes.
Today, there are primarily two varieties of cinnamon available – Cassia cinnamon from China, Vietnam and Indonesia and Ceylon cinnamon from Sri Lanka, India, Brazil and the Caribbean. The cheaper variety, Cassia cinnamon has a stronger flavour while Ceylon cinnamon is mellow and sweet.
Cinnamon has been proven to fight fungal, bacterial, and viral elements in foods, thus preventing spoilage. It’s no surprise that in the Middle Ages, when food spoilage was far more frequent due to lack of refrigeration, many recipes, both sweet and savory, were flavored with the spice.