Real saffron is extremely expensive and rare, meaning that if you happened upon saffron at a good price, it is most likely fake, made from turmeric, safflower or dried beetroot. However, the amazing taste of real saffron may be well worth the price and effort. Real saffron should be of a rich burgundy or dark red color. When ground, saffron should have a powdery texture. If dissolved in water, it will color after 15 minutes.