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Bixa orellana. A tree found in tropical America, characterized by cordate leaves and spinose, seed-filled capsules; a yellowish-red dye obtained from the pulp around the seeds is used as a food coloring.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(Bixa orellana), a tall shrub or small tree of the family Bixaceae. The alternate leaves are cordate-ovate. The large, five-parted flowers are in terminal panicles. The fruit is a polyspermous bivalve capsule. The annatto is native to tropical America. It has been cultivated for a long time in tropical countries of the Old and New Worlds to obtain an orange dye, also known as annatto. The dye is obtained from the fleshy outer covering of the seeds and is used mainly to color butter, margarine, cheese, and similar food products. Indians used the dye as body paint. The annatto is also used as a hedge and as a windbreak.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Annatto seeds are commonly used for coloring cheddar cheese, but also are used in Caribbean cuisine.
A number of researchers have investigated the application of annatto seeds in animal feed (SILVA et al., 2005; REGO et al., 2010).
[50, 65] isolated eight apocarotenoids from annatto seeds: methyl (7Z, 9Z, 9,Z)-apo-6,-lycopenoate, methyl (9Z)-apo-8'-lycopenoate, methyl 1(all-E)-apo-8'-lycopenoate, methyl (all-E)-8-apo-beta-carotene-8'-oate, methyl (all-E)-apo-6'-lycopenoate, 6-geranylgeranyl-8'-methyl-6,8' diapocaroten-6-8' dioate, 6'-geranylgeranyl-6'-methyl-(9Z)-6,6,-diapocaroten-6-6'-dioate, and 6-geranylgeranyl-6,-methyl-6-6'-diapocaroten-6-6'-dioate.
They use a variety of plant materials, including beets, turmeric root, annatto seeds, purple carrot, purple cabbage, gardenia flowers, hibiscus flowers and grape skin.
At Two Senoritas, the pork is marinated in a mix of achiote (red annatto seeds) and fresh citrus juice for 24 hours, then chargrilled and served over piping hot corn tortillas, topped with fresh pineapple, onion and cilantro, with salsa verde and frijoles charros, or pinto beans, on the side.
Cheshire comes in white (actually pale yellow), red (dyed with annatto seeds to its more familiar orange), and some even are left to become blue, whether by design or by providence (not coincidentally, these are the colors of the Union Jack).
Remove from the heat, strain out the annatto seeds, and discard them.
[USPRwire, Fri Apr 05 2019] Annatto seeds and extracts have been in use for over a century in Europe and North America to impart a yellow to red color to foods, especially dairy products such as cheddar and Colby cheeses.
Annatto colorants are derived from annatto seeds that grow on a tree called Bixa Orellana.
'Getting the right ingredients such as atswete (annatto seeds) for kare-kare, malunggay (moringa) and dahon ng sili (pepper leaves) for tinola, and ube ice cream for halo-halo can be a challenge ,' Fernando said.
Seal oil in vacuum bag with annatto seeds and chili flakes.
*Find appealingly musky, reddish achiote paste, ground from annatto seeds, at Latino grocery stores; you'll also find prepared masa there.