Achiote – Also called annatto, achiote is the dried seeds of a small tree (Bixa orellana) native to tropical South America. Although the seeds have a faint, peppery flavour with a hint of bitterness when used in large quantities, it is most often used for the orange-red colour it imparts to foods. The seeds are usually soaked in water or other liquid, or fried in oil, and discarded in order to obtain a coloured liquid which can then be used to colour stocks, stews, and rice. It is widely used throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, and parts of Southeast Asia. Commercially, achiote is used as a colouring agent in butter, smoked fish, cheese, and cosmetics.