All things Cinnamon in your Dessert

If you are a Cinnamon Rice Pudding fan, you will surely want to try Ceylon Cinnamon.

Cassia Cinnamon is the standard ground cinnamon & cinnamon sticks that you would normally find in a grocery store.  Ceylon is way more intense.
The difference between Cassia Cinnamon & Ceylon Cinnamon is noticeable in every way

You will find most commonly Cassia Cinnamon Sticks or ground Cassia cinnamon in the dried spice section of your local grocers. They are very hard and difficult to break into smaller sized pieces. If you just need a small amound of fresh ground cinnamon to top off your latte or dessert, you can always use a small kitchen wrasp or grater to grind some cinnamon sticks.

If you have never tried it, Ceylon Cinnamon has an intense flavour & aroma compared to the commercially available ground Cassia cinnamon. I only use Ceylon in my Cinnamon & Raisin Rice Pudding flavours. Regular Cassia works fine in other pudding flavours that don't prominently feature Cinnamon as the main event.

Ceylon Cinnamon has a more intense flavour and aroma
Thicker & harder Cassia Cinnamon Quills (left) and thinner, pliable Ceylon Cinnamon (Right)

Ceylon is different in all ways to it's cousin. It is rolled in thin multilayer quills that can easily be broken apart with your fingers. The structure is almost like a burlap bag material. Because of the need to be careful about allergens and cross contamination of spices in commercial food production, I have a separate spice grinder that I use only for cinnamon. When you break up pieces of Ceylon and grind it to a powder, you need to lift the cover off of your spice grinder very slowly, because there is such a plume of ground cinnamon particles that try to escape. I don't grind the Ceylon down to a fine powder because I really love crunching into a small bit of it that didn't get pulverized.

In Ottawa, I have regularly been able to find it at the Herb & Spice Bank St. store and the Herb & Spice on Wellington in Westboro. It usually comes packaged in a small baggie containing 5 or 6 short quills. I usually grind them down as I need them, to preserve their freshness.

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