Carmencita in Ahora o Nunca: Discovering saffron

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Past Friday March 8th, TVE’s program “Ahora o Nunca”, the spectators had the pleasure of diving on an exciting journey through the story and the flavor of saffron. Carmencita, a company with over a century of compromise with excellence, was the main character of this thrilling episode.

”Ahora o Nunca” is a TV program which invites the espectators to explore the natural, cultural, gastronomic, historic and artistic richness of Spain in three dimensions: past, present and future. With reportages, live connections and the collaboration of celebrities, the show offers a window to the diversity and authenticity of our country.

On this special episode, filmed in Novelda, where Carmencita has its roots and where it keeps maintaining their activity, saffron was the unquestionable protagonist. Jesús Navarro Navarro, president of Carmencita and grandchild of the founders, was interviewed by the journalist Pedro Mardones in Novelda’s Casa Museo Modernista, where he shared the company’s fascinating story, which has already celebrated its century, and revealed the secrets of saffron, from how it was handled yesteryear to nowadays. A modern process on Europe’s most up-to-date warehouse, through which around 12.000 tons of spices pass every year.

One of the highlights was the staging with period costumes and the manual preparation of the famous saffron “carteritas”, a tribute to the tradition and craftmanship which has distinguished Carmencita from its starts. Moreover, the audience had the opportunity of visiting Carmencita’s factory, a place where around 12.000 tons of spices pass every year, as Managing Director Jesús Navarro Alberola told us. There we were able to witness firsthand the production process, which is now more mechanized than a century ago, but still preserves the artisan origin and the attention of expert hands.

As a finishing touch, a dessert recipe using saffron was made, Millefeuille with saffron cream, baked by Pablo and Paco, from the R&D and Kitchen department of the company.

If you missed the exciting episode, or you wish to revive the experience, you can watch the replay on the following link: Ahora o Nunca – Episode 285.

In Carmencita, we are proud of our compromise with quality and tradition. Saffron is not only a culinary product, but it is also part of our identity and heritage.