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AROMATIC HERBS and PLANTS

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TERMENI importanti pentru acest document

AROMATIC HERBS and PLANTS




ABSINTHE: (or WORMWOOD)

Absinthe, or Wormwood, is an aromatic plant containing an Alkaloid known since ancient times for its properties as a tonic and febrifuge. The plant was used to make medicinal drinks in the Middle Ages. The liqueur Absinthe was first made commercially bi H.L. Pernod in 1797.

AGAVE

A large plant with enormous fleshy leaves, originating from Mexico. The fermented sap is used in several Latin American countries to make fermented drinks, such as PULQUE, MESCAL, and TEQUILA.

ANCHO PEPPER:

This dried pepper, native to South America, is the most popular of all the dried PEPPERS used in Mexican cooking. It is mild and has a full, rich flavour.

ANGELICA:

An aromatic umbelliferous plant from the Scandinavian countries, which was introduced into France by the Vikings and cultivated by the monks. A member of the PARSLEY family, ANGELICA is probably a native of Northern Europe and Syria. The entire plant can be used, as even the root provides a drug, its green stalks are candied in sugar and used in cakes, gingerbreads, puddings, and soufflés. It is a specialty of the town of Niort, and Austin de Croze has described lyrically what he considers to be the best way to enjoy it: liqueur manufactures also use the crushed stems and roots of Angelica in the production of Melissa cordial, Chartreuse, Vespétro, and Gin.

AMARANTH:

An ornamental plant with purple flowers, whose name has been given to a synthetic product used as a red coloring agent (E123). About ten years ago AMARANTH was widely used to color confectionery, pork products, cheese rind, and fruits in syrup. Suspected of being a carcinogen, it was prohibited in the USSR, then in the United States and Sweden, and finally, in 1977, in the EEC (except when used for caviar).

ARTEMISIA:

A genus of aromatic plants with a scent of CHAMPHOR. The species WORMWOOD formerly provided the flavoring for ABSINTHE. Another species is used in distillery to flavor the liqueur GÉNÉPI. The leaves of some varieties are used as a fresh condiment to flavor fatty meats, and fish, such as pork and eel, and many also are an ingredient in certain marinades. ARTEMISIA is mainly used in Germany, the Balkans, and Italy.

ASH:

A tree of genus Fraxinus, which grows in temperate climates. The leaves of the European ASH (F.EXCELSIOR) are used for a fermented drink called frénette, or to make a type of tea. The very young green keys can be preserved in vinegar and used instead of capers.

BAMBOO:

A plant common throughout tropical Asia, who's young, tender, and slightly crunchy shoots are served as a vegetable. The Japanese also enjoy BAMBOO seeds, which have a slightly flour texture, and in Vietnam and China food is steamed in bamboo leaves. In Cambodia, the bamboo canes themselves are used for cooking minced meat in. Bamboo shoot, ivory white in color, is conical in shape, averaging 7 cm in diameter at the base and 10 cm length. When fresh, the fine needle-sharp hairs, which cover them, must be removed before use. In Europe, they are only found dried or preserved in brine or vinegar (under their Japanese name of taknoko or their Chinese name of sun ki). They contain a good deal of water and have a low calorific value, but they are quite rich in vitamin B and phosphorous.

BARBADINE:

A climb plant originally from South America, introduced to the West Indies in the 19th century. Related to the PASSION FLOWER, its green ovoid fruits are 25 cm long and are used as vegetables. As they ripen they become yellowish, and their whitish tart flesh is then used in the preparation of drinks, jams, and sorbets. The bark is used to make a jelly. When very ripe, the fruit can also be flavored with Madeira and eaten with a spoon.

BASELLA:

A tropical climbing plant, also known as vine spinach, captable of acclimatizing to sunny regions. The stem, which can grow as high as 2 m, bears leaves which are harvested as the plant grows and are eaten like spinach. In the West Indies, BASELLA is prepared like brèdes.

BASIL:

An aromatic plant, originating in India, whose name derived from Greek BASILIKOS, meaning Royal (BASILICO in Italian); only the sovereign (basileus) was allowed to cut it. Sweet basil is now widely grown as potherb. The leaves, which have a strong flavor of lemon and jasmine, are much used for flavoring in the cuisines of southern France and northern Italy. Especially Genoa was Pesto sauce is made. Some of the aroma is lost in drying, but the leaves can be successfully preserved in olive oil. Basil is particularly favored with tomatoes but can also be used to flavor salad, stuffing's, sauces, and omelet's as well as soups.

BAY: ( LAUREL): SWEET BAY.

A Mediterranean evergreen shrub that is widely cultivated in temperate regions for ornament and for its glassy aromatic leaves, which have a slightly bitter smell. BAY LEAVES are among the most commonly used culinary herbs: a leaf is always incorporated in a bouquet garni. Bay leaves may be used fresh or died and either whole or powdered, to season stocks, ragouts, stews, patés, and terrines. The BAY TREES is in fact a species of LAUREL. (Laurus nobilis), also known as BAY LAUREL or true LAUREL. In ancient times it was used to make the laurel wreaths with which poets and victorious soldiers were crowned as a sign of honor. It should not be confused with any of the other trees and shrubs called LAURELS, such as the CHERRY LAUREL, which has white flowers and small red berries and whose leaves contain PRISSIC ACID.

BIRD's-FOOT TREFOIL:

A leguminous plant also known in France as méliot, trèfle de cheval, mirliot, etc., according to the species. When dried, the leaves, flowers, and stems give off a very pleasant smell and can be used to flower marinades. In some areas it is used to flavor rabbit, which is stuffed with the leaves and flowers after it has been cleaned. In Switzerland mélilot is used to make herbal tea. Some cheeses (notably the German cows'-milk cheese Schabzieger and curd cheeses) are flavored with the yellow flowers of BIRD's-FOOT TREFOIL.

BITTER:

Having a sharp or acid flavor. Certain bitter plants are used in cooking; they include chicory, bay, ginger, rhubarb, orange, and bitter almond. Others, whose bitterness is brought out by infusion or distillation, are used essentially in drinks: wormwood, chamomile, centaury, gentian, hops, cinchona, etc.

BLACH BRYONY:

A perennial herb, common in Europe, also known in French as herbe aux femme's battutes (battered wives' herb) and vigne noir (black vine). It has fairly large brown tubers with edible white pulp. However, the red shiny berries are poisonous.

BERGAMOT: (BEE BALM)

A small yellow sour citrus fruit, similar to the orange, the rind of which contains an essential oil used in perfumery and confectionery. The zest is used in PATISSERIE. The BERGAMOT is mostly cultivated in Calabria. Bergamot is also the name of a small square honey-colored barley sugar, flavored with natural bergamot essence, which has been a specialty of the town of Nancy since 1850. Finally, there is a variety of PEAR called Bergamot: it is almost round with a yellowish skin and very sweet fragrant juicy flesh.

BOQUET GARNI:

A selection of aromatic plants used to flavor a sauce or stock. They are usually tied together in a small bundle to prevent them from dispersing in the liquid and are removed before serving. A BOUQUET GARNI generally consists of two or three sprigs of PARSLEY, a sprig of THYME, and one or two dried BAY LEAVES, but its composition may vary according to local resources. CELERY, LEEKS, SAVORY, SAGE etc., can be added. In Provence, ROSEMARY is always included. In old French cookery, BOUQUETS GARNIS contained CLOVES as well herbs, and the whole bundle was wrapped in thin slice of BACON. A BOUQUET GARNI may also be enclosed in a small muslin (cheesecloth) bag.

BORAGE:

An annual plant native to the Middle East, it is now common Southern Europe and England. This is a small herb with bright blue flowers. Its fresh leaves and flowers decorate and perfume PIMMS WINE CUP, and the taste is reminiscent of CUCUMBER. Finally chopped leaves can be used to flavor CREAM CHEESE and YOGHURT.

BURDOCK:

A large herbaceous plant common in uncultivated land. In cooking, the fleshy roots are prepared like SALSIFY or ASPARAGUS; the young shoots and leaves, which have a refreshing and slightly bitter flavor, are used in SOUPS, or are eaten braised especially in the south of French and Italy. The larger leaves are used in some areas for wrapping BUTTER or soft cheeses. BURDOCK grows wild in Europe and is only eaten locally, but in Japan it is cultivated as a VEGETABLE:

BURNET: (PINPINELLA SAXSIFRAGA): SALAD BURNET.

Native to Europe, today it is used mainly, in France and Italy. This is similar to BORAGE in flavor and is likewise used in WINE CUPS, SALADS, SAUCES, CASSEROLES and COCKTAILS. The leaves are used fresh, when young.

BUGLOSS:

An herbaceous plant common in Europe. Its name, derived from the Greek buglossa (meaning ox tongue), comes from its fleshy slightly rough leaves. Similar to BORAGE, it has the same uses and its flowers are also used to prepare a refreshing drink.

CANNA:

A vigorous tropical plant with a thick fleshy underground stem, which is eaten as a vegetable. Some varieties produce an edible starch used particularly in Australia, where it is known as 'Queensland arrowroot'.

CARAWAY:

An aromatic plant, common in central and northern Europe that is growing mainly for its brown oblong seeds. When dried, these are used as a spice, particularly in Eastern Europe, to flavor sauerkraut and stews and to accompany certain cheeses (GOUDA and MUNSTER). In Hungary and Germany, where CARAWAY is very popular, it is used to flavor bread and cakes. In England, it is added to cooked potatoes and baked in cakes and biscuits. In France, it is used to flavor VOSGES dràgees. CARAWAY is also widely used in making liqueurs, such as Kümmel, Vespétro, Schnapps, and Aquavit. There are various alternative names for it in French, including 'meadow cumin', 'fool's aniseed', and 'mountain cumin'. CARAWAY was used in prehistoric times (the seeds have been found at ancient sites) and was appreciated by the Romans, who ate the root like a vegetable.

CARDAMOM: (or CARDAMON)

An aromatic plant from the Malabar region of southwest India, whose capsule contain seeds that are dried and used as a spice. CARDAMOM is used much more in the East than in Europe, except for Scandinavian countries, where it is used to spice MELLET wines, STEWED FRUIT, FLANS, and some CHARCUTERIE products. In France nowadays it is hardly used at all, except in GINGERBREAD. Most common in India, CARDAMON is used to flavor RICE, CAKES, OMELETTES, MEATBALLS, and NUDLES. In Arab countries its spicy flavor is appreciated with COFFE.

CARDOON:

A southern European plant, related to the ARTICHOKE, whose leafstalk is eaten as a vegetable. CARDOONS are available at the end of autumn and in winter; in the south of France they were formerly traditionally eaten with Christmas dinner. In Tours, they are cooked au gratin.

When purchased, the stalk must be firm, creamy-white in color, wide, and plumb. They are sold with the leaf part and top of the root, which means they can bee kept for a few days in cold salted water. The stalks are especially good fried or with bone marrow; they can also be served cold, with vinaigrette. They are usually used to garnish white or red meats (with the meat juice, butter, or béchamel sauce).

COLTSFOOT:

A plant with yellow flowers, the dried leaves of which are smoked, like EUCALYPTUS, to soothe coughs. They are also used to make TISANES and in Canada, as an AROMATIC, especially with fish.

CHAMOMILE:

A daisy like plant found growing wild throughout Europe and parts of America. The leaves and flowers are used to make a refreshing TISANE, Chamomile tea. It is available dry.

CHERVIL:

An aromatic native plant to Southern Russia and the Middle East, this parsley-like plant with feathery leaves is considered one of the FINES HERBES in French cuisine. Now common throughout Europe that is used as a condiment particularly its freshly picked leaves. These are used to garnish SOUPS, OMELETTES, and as a complement to SAUCE (Bèarnaise, Gribiche, Vinaigrette) and dishes of RIVER FISH cooked au vert. Its aroma is very volatile and care must be taken to avoid heating it excessively or mixing it with too much oil. CHEVRIL keeps well when frozen. In addition to common CHERVIL and CURLY CHERVIL (which is especially decorative), there is the delicate but rare bulbous CHERVIL: its tuberous roots, aromatic and with a high starch content, are eaten like ARTICHOKES.

CHERVIS:

A plant originating from China, widely cultivated in the past for its floury sweet roots. Oliver de Serres praised this vegetable, which was prepared like salsify; however, because of its low yield it was abandoned in favor of SALSIFY.

CHIVES:

An alliaceous plant, related to the SPRING ONION (SCALLIONS), native annual plant to the cooler parts of Europe, CHIVES are now available in many parts of the world including Canada and America, CHIVES are a member of the ONION family. The fine, hollow steams are used fresh and chopped finely, in CREAM SOUPS, SRAMBLED EGGS, PMELETTES, SALADS, and HORS d'OEUVRES. Chinese CHIVES have larger leaves, flowers that smell of ROSES, and taste GARLIC.

CHRYSANTHEMUM:

An ornamental plant whose petals are used in Japan, China, and Vietnam for preparing SALADS. Their taste is similar to that of CRESS:

CINCHONA:

A tree originating in Peru and cultivated chiefly in Indonesia for its bark, which is rich in QUININE. CINCHONA bark is also used in manufacture of apèritifs and alcoholic drinks (see QUININE).

COLSTOOT:

A plant with yellow flower, the dried leaves of which are smoked, like EUCALYPTUS, to soothe coughs. They are also used to make TISANES and, in Canada, as an aromatic, especially with fish.

COMFREY:

Native to Europe and Asia, the leaves of this plant are used, either fresh (in SALAD or dried and powdered in TEA), the died root is also used, mainly as flavoring for COUNTRY WINE. This herb is a relative of BORAGE, and is used in the same way.

CORIANDER: (CHINESE PARSLEY-CILANTRO)

A member of the CARROT family, this aromatic umbelliferous plant used mainly for its dried seeds, either whole or ground. The Hebrews flavored their CAKES with CORIANDER and Romans made use of it for preserving MEAT. However, CORIANDER has played only a modest role in France (expect in making such liqueurs as Izarra and Chartreuse) compared with the place it occupies in Mediterranean cookery (in SOUPS, with VEGETABLES, in MARINADES and PASTRIES). In Germany, CORIANDER is used for seasoning CABBAGE and in MARINADES for GAME. Its most classic uses are for preparation of VEGATABLE à la greque and of PICKLES in VINEGAR. CORIANDER leaves, commonly known as Arab parsley or Chinese parsley in France and as Greek parsley in Britain, can be used like parsley: the leaves feature especially in the cuisine of China, Southeast Asia, South America, and Mexico (where is used in CHILI con CARNE).

COSTMARY: (ALECOST)

COSTMARY is similar to TANSY, being spicy but less bitter. Native to the Far East, the leaves where traditionally used in Britain and America as flavoring for BEER - hence the name 'ALECOST' it is used with GAME and VEAL and in SOUPS. It is mostly available dried.

CRESS: (CRESSON)

Any of various plants of the MUSTARD FAMILY, which are cultivated for their sharp-tasting leaves, which can be eaten raw or cooked.

ALÉNOIS CRESS:

A type of CRESS that grows abundantly in region of Orléans (alénois is a corrupt form of orléanais). The young plants are sold in bunches throughout the year and are easily recognized by their small leaves arranged in a rosette. The leaves have a piquant flavor and are used as a condiment in SALADS and SAUCES, as a garnish for CANAPÉS and SANDWICHES, and sometimes for garnishing GRILLED (broiled) DISHES.

GARDEN CRESS:

This is available from July to March. It has shiny leaves and a strong flavor and is used raw in SALADS or cooked in SOUPS and PURÉES.

WATERCRESS:

This is the most popular type of CRESS and is available all year, but at its best from April to October. It grows in running water and is widely cultivated. It has a distinctive peppery taste and is delicious eaten raw, but it can also be cooked in SOUPS and FORCEMEATS.

MEADOWS CRESS:

This plant grows wild in damp places, and its leaves resemble those of WATERCRESS except that they are firmer.

CRESS is believed to be native to the Middle East but is now naturalized widely cultivated in Europe. In the 14th century, it was used mainly for medicinal purposes but gradually began to be used in SOUPS. It was not until about 1810 in France that methods of cultivating the CRESS beds were introduced from Germany. The district of Senlis specialized in growing CRESS and it soon found a niche in gastronomy - in about 1850, the Café Riche includes CRESS Purée on its menu. Today, CRESS is produced in France mainly in Oise, Essonne, and Seine-Maritime. When CRESS is to eaten raw, it should be picked over carefully, the thicker stems and yellowing leaves removed, and the rest washed and drained carefully. It should not be left to soak in water. WILD CRESS should not be eaten as it can transmit parasites. It has a low caloric value (21 Cal per 100 g), but is rich in vitamin C and also in IRON.

CUMIN:

An aromatic plant with long spindle-shaped seeds that are used as a condiment and a flavoring.

They have a hot, piquant, and slightly bitter taste. CUMIN is cultivated today in Mediterranean countries, and also in Germany, the Soviet Union, and even as far north a s Norway. There are biblical references to its use in SOUP and BREAD, and the Romans used it to flavor SAUCES and grilled (broiled FISH and to preserve MEAT. It was often included in the recipes of the Middle Ages (see cominée). Today, it is a classic condiment for BREAD (especially in Eastern Europe) and is also used in certain preparations of cold MEAT and CHEESES, such as MUNSTER CHEESE.

COMINÉE:

In ancient times, a culinary term for dishes that contained CUMIN. This spice was widely used in the Middle Ages for seasoning SOUPS, POULTRY dishes, and FISH dishes. Taillevent's Viander gives recipes for COMINÉE d'AMANDES (a sort of poultry soup made with verjuice and flavored with shelled almonds, ginger, and cumin), COMINÉE de GÉLINES (i.e. of chicken), and COMINÉE d'ESTURGEON (sturgeon cut into pieces and boiled with CUMIN and ALMONDS.

CURRY LEAF:

A relative to LEMON TREE, and native to Southeast Asia, this leaf BESTOW a CURRY-LIKE flavor to certain commercial CURRY POWDERS. It is also used throughout Southern India in Vegetarian Dishes. The CURRY LEAF is available in fresh or dried form. Although the fresh leaf are preferred.

Nowadays, CURRY is categorized as MILD, HOT, and VERY HOT. A standard CURRY POWDER would include, for example, TUMERIC, CORIANDER, CUMIN, PEPPER (essential), CLOVES, CARDAMOM, GINGER, NUTMEG, TAMARIND, and CHILI PEPPER. It may be further seasoned with FENNEL, CARAWAY, AJOWANG, GINSENG, dried BASIL, MUSTARD SEEDS, and CINNAMON. The spices are finely powdered and stored in fragrant wooden boxes. In Sri Lanka, COCONUT MILK or YOGHURT is added. In Thailand, dried SHRIMP PASTE is added. In India, CURRIES are oily, liquid, dry, or powdered, and their color ranges from white to golden-brown, or from red to green. In the East, CURRY may be one of many vegetarian dishes (based on chickpea flour, lentils, and rice), as well as meat or fish dishes. In the West CURRIES are mainly prepared with PORK, CHICKEN, or LAMB, but the Indian Curry sauce has many other uses. There are three methods for preparing a CURRY.

INDIAN STYLE

Meat, cut into pieces, is browned in a pan with sliced onions and shallots, then removed and replaced with a stew of tomatoes, CURRY POWDER (sometime with COCONUT MILK), and spices which are simmered before replacing the meat plus a little stock (beef or chicken) and simmering again.

CHINESE STYLE

Meat, curt up into very small pieces, is marinated with CURRY MIXTURE and SOY SAUCE, then placed in a pan containing lard and browned with the spices.

ENGLISH STYLE

This is a standard stew of meat (cut in pieces and sprinkled with flour then CURRY POWDER) with stock added.

DANDELOIN:

A Perennial flowering plant that grows wind in Europe. The name is derived from the alternative French name dent-de-lion (literally 'lion's tooth', referring to its serrated leaves); pissenlit is a reference to its supposed diuretic properties! DANDELOIN leaves are low in calories but rich in IRON and vitamins A, B1, B2, and C. They are usually eaten raw in salads, but may be cooked like SPINACH. Wild DANDELOIN leaves should be picked before the plant has flowered (January-March), when they are small and sweet. In France cultivated varieties of dandelion are available from October to March; they have longer more tender leaves but sometimes lack flavor. In SALADS, DANDELOIN are traditionally accompanied by pieces of BACON and GARLIC-flavored croutons (as in salade du groin d'ane, literally 'donkey snout salad' typical of Lyons), HARD-BOILED (hard-cooked) EGGS, or WALNUTS. 

CUSTARD MARROW: (CHAYOTE)

A species of climbing gourd which is eaten as a vegetable; it is called CHRISTIPHINE or BRIONNE in the West Indies and CHOUCHOUTE in Madagascar and Polynesia. Originating from Mexico, where its young shoots are eaten like ASPARAGUS, the CUSTARD MARROW is cultivated in tropical countries and in North Africa. It resembles a green or white PEAR, with a fairly rough skin and several spines, and is a big as two fists, with deep longitudinal ribs. Its firm homogeneous white flesh does not have a very pronounced flavor, but it is sweet and has high water content; it has a low caloric value (12 Cal per 100 g).

DILL: (DILL WEED: DILL SEED)-

An aromatic umbelliferous plant originating in the East and introduced into Europe in ancient times. It is commonly called false anise or bastard fennel. The French name comes from the Greek anethon (fennel), and in Roman times it was the symbol of vitality.

DILL leaves are used as a culinary herb and the seeds are used in cooking in north Africa (in the preparation of meat), the Soviet Union, and particularly in Scandinavia, where they are used in the preparation of SALMOM and CRYFISH. DILL is also used to make an aromatic VINEGAR and as a flavoring for various pickles, including GHERKINS.

ELDER:

A common European tree of shrub whose aromatic flowers are prepared as fritters (like mimosa fritters) and used to flavor JAMS, VINEGARS, and various fermented drinks. The young shoots contain an edible and delicate core, which is prepared like ASPARAGUS. Elderberries are used to make JAM, JELLY, and wine.

EPAZOTE: (Mexican Tea), WORM SEED: GOOSEFOOD: JERUSALEM OAK-

EPAZOTE can be found growing wild all over the Americas and many parts of Europe. It is widely used ad green herbs in Mexican cooking and as a TISANE in Europe.

FENUGREEK:

An aromatic Mediterranean plant originating in the Middle East. It is a leguminous plant belonging to the pea family. It produces long slender curved pods containing oblong flattened brownish seeds. The seeds, which have a slightly bitter taste, are roasted and ground, then used as a flavoring in CURRIES, They are very hard and can only be ground with a heavy PESTLE and MORTAR or in a special grinder.

The leaves have a very strong smell and in Turkey, various Arab countries, and India, they are used either fresh or dried, as a vegetable or herb. In North Africa, the seeds were traditionally used to fatten woman, who regularly consumed a mixture of FENUGREEK FLOUR, OLIVE OIL, and CASTER (superfine) SUGAR. FENUGREEK is used in the WEST only as one of the main ingredients in CURRY POWDER or to flavor SPICED VINEGAR.

FINES HERBES:

A mixture of chopped aromatic herbs, such as PARSLEY, CHERVIL, TARRAGON, and CHIVES, in various proportions. The mixture is used to flavor SAUCES, CREAM CHEESES, MEAT, SAUTÉED VEGETABLES, and OMELETTES. In the past, chopped MUSHROOM was added, and today some chefs include sticks (stalk9 of CELERY, FENNEL, BASIL, ROSEMARY, THYME, and BAY LEAF.

GALINGALE:

A PERENNIAL Mediterranean plant producing scaly brown tubers the size of hazelnuts, the sweet white farinaceous pulp of which earned them the French name amandes de terre (earth almonds). They may be eaten dry, raw, or roasted like chestnuts.

In North Africa, the tubers are generally ground and used in forcemeats for poultry, meatballs, and spice mixtures.

In Spain, the GALINGALE is called chufa; grown in the Valencia region, it is used for making a popular drink, orchid, which is similar to orgeat. It also yields on oil, which has a lower freezing point than water and does not turn rancid, and flour used in confectionery.

GÉNÉPI:

An Alpine species of WORMWOOD, well known for its tonic properties. It is used in the preparation of HERB TEAS and is the main ingredient in a number of plant LIQUEURS, including the famous Gènépi des Alpes.

GENTIAN: (GENTIANE)

A plant from the mountains of Europe, pickled especially in the Jura and the Alps. The roots are used as a substitute for CINCHONA. Before the latter was introduced into the Old War (1639), the large yellow GENTIAN (Gentiana lutea), the panacea of the mountain dwellers, was prescribed as an infusion or syrup as a tonic, stimulant, and febrifuge. Nowadays, it is mainly used for its aperitif and digestive properties. GENTIAN essence, amber yellow in color, is excellent bitter tonic with a strong pungent flavor; it is an ingredient of many APÉRITIFS.

GINGER:

A plant of Southeast Asian origin that is cultivated in hot countries for its spicy aromatic rhizomes (underground stems), which are used fresh, preserved in sugar, or powdered. Widely appreciated in the middle ages, GINGER was used as a flavoring and as a sweetmeat. Since the 18th century it has fallen out of use in Europe, except in PATISSERIE and confectionery (sweets, biscuits, cakes, and jams, particularly in England, Alsace, and the Netherlands) and for flavoring drinks. However, it continues to be an important seasoning in eastern cookery - fresh or dried, grated GINGER, or preserved in sugar, syrup, or vinegar. In India and Pakistan it is used to flavor meat, fish in sauce, rice, and vegetable purées, to season CURRIES, and to flavor TEA. In China and especially in Japan, it is widely used fresh, shredded in courts-bouillons, marinades, and soups. It is an essential seasoning for fish and WHALE fillets. It is even eating pickled between courses. In Southeast Asia crystallized GINGER is the most widespread sweetmeat.

HAWTHORN:

A thorny shrub frequently found in woodlands and hedgerows throughout Europe. Its leaves and flowers are used for tisanes, as it is traditionally thought to have a calming action on the heart. A Mediterranean species of HAWTHORN, known as the Mediterranean or NEAPOLITAN meddler, is very widespread in the south of France; its red fleshy fruits have a tart flavor and are used to make jellies and jams.

HERBS: (HERBES)

Various aromatic plants that are used in cookery. Among the most common HERBS used for seasoning are Chervil, Thyme, Rosemary, Dill, Tarragon, Chives, and Parsley (see aromatic, fines herbes). Potherbs traditionally include six vegetables: Orache, Spinach, Lettuce, Sorrel, Chard, and Purslane. They are used not only to flavor SOUPS and STEWS but also as VEGETABLES, SALAD INGREDIENTS, and as a garnish. HERBES à SOUPE, which were traditionally used to flavor Soups and Stews, consisted of various green vegetables (carrot and celery tops, radish leaves, parsley stalks, etc.). Herbes de Provence consists of a mixture of aromatic plants (thyme, rosemary, bay, basil, savory), which are sometimes dried and are used especially to flavor grills. Herbes vénitiennes are a mixture of aromatic herbs (tarragon, parsley, chervil, and sorrel), which are finely chopped and incorporated into kneaded butter.

In former times, the term herbs', when used in cookery, included all edible plants and

Vegetables which grow above ground; those growing below ground were called 'roots'.

HOP: (HOUBLON)

A vigorous climbing plant, which grows in temperate regions. Female flowers are used mainly in the brewing industry to give the bitter taste to beer.

The flowers of the male plant, known in France as jets de houblon (HOP SHOOTS), are edible and are used particularly in Belgian cooking; dishes including HOP SHOOTS are termed à l'anversoise. The shoots are prepared in the same way as asparagus: they are first boiled in salted water with lemon juice added, then they can either be cooked in a covered pan in butter or simmered in cream, veal juices, etc. HOP SHOOT in cream is the classic accompaniment to poached eggs (plain or fried croutons, possibly with hollandaise sauce) and poached sole.

Pillows stuffed with HOPS are said to aid INSOMNIA, as is HOP TEA.




HYSSOP:

A perennial aromatic plant native to Southern Europe, the Middle East and Southern Russia, the leaf has a pungent taste and a strong rather acrid smell. In ancient times and during the Middle Ages it was very popular as a flavoring for soups and stuffing's. Nowadays, its main use in the distillation of liqueurs, such as Chartreuse, but the young leaves can be used as a seasoning for oily fish or to flavor stuffing's some charcuterie products, fruit salads, and compotes.

LEMON BALM:

A perennial plant native to the Mediterranean. So-called because of its Lemon Scent, the leave of this plant are used in VEGETABLE and FRUIT SALADS, DRINKS especially PUNCH and CORDIALS - SOUP and SAUCES, as a TISANE, or wherever a faint lemon flavor is required.

The sweet scented flowers are distilled to make MELISSA cordial, especially that known as eau de Carmes. Fresh or dried leaves are available.

LEMON GRASS:

This includes several species of grass, all possessing the flavor of lemon due to the presence of CITRUS OILS. This aromatic GRASS is native to Southeast Asia, where in some places the LEMON TREE is absent. It is useful in flavoring SALADS, FISH dishes and SOUPS. The GRASS is available powdered as 'SEREH POWDER'. In Thailand, and other parts of Southeast Asia, the leaves of the KAFIR LIME (Citrus hystrix) are also used for FISH dishes.

LIME BLOSSOM:

The highly fragrant flowers of the lime tree, or linden, which are dried and used to prepare soothing infusion, sometimes to flavor creams, ices, and desserts, and more rarely as an aromatic in cooking. The most aromatic LIME BLOSSOM comes from the Drôme in France, where a lime-blossom ratafia was formerly made. LIME-BLOSSOM honey has a pronounced aroma and flavor.

LOVAGE: (LOVE PARSLEY)

A large, celery-like plant native to the Mediterranean that yields an essential oil giving LOVAGE its strong, aromatic flavor. The entire plant is used; stems and root can be cooked in the manner of CELERY, or CANDIED as for ANGELICA; leaves, roots and seeds are used in SALADS, SOUPS and SAUCES, and seeds can be used in BAKING. Available dried, as whole seeds or in root form.

MACERON:

An herbaceous plant formerly grown in the south of France for its young shoots, which were eaten like CELERY. Also known as 'black parsley' and 'giant MACEDONIAN parsley', it has a strong rather bitter smell and tastes like CELERY, which has replaced it as a vegetable and flavoring.

MAIDENHAIR FERN

A species of FERN with aromatic and mucilaginous leaves that are used to make infusions and syrups to ease bronchial conditions. MAIDENHAIR FERN syrup was once used to sweeten hot drinks, particularly Bavarian cream. Capilé, a very popular drink in Portugal, especially in Lisbon, is made of MADEINHAIR FERN syrup, grated lemon zest, and cold water.

MALLOW:

A common plant that grows in fields, hedgerows, and on roadside. There are about 20 different species found all over the world. In France the best-known variety is the GREATER MALLOW, which can reach a height of about 1 m. Its leaves contain mucilage used as an emollient and in infusions. The leaves can also be eaten in salads or as a vegetable, like spinach. The flowers are shooting to the chest troubles and sore throats.

MANIOC:

The edible root of a tropical plant, also called CASSAVA, having a white starchy flesh beneath a brown rind; it is used as a vegetable or to make TAPIOCA. Originally from Brazil, the plant is cultivated throughout South and Central American and has been introduced into Africa, where it is now a basic foodstuff (ground into semolina, salted or sugared in flat cakes, or boiled in foutou). It is also grown in Asia.

The are two varieties of MANIOC: SWEET and BITTER. Sweet MANIOC is rich in calories (262 Cal per 100 g) and Carbohydrates but deficient in Proteins, vitamins and Mineral Salts. The root is peeled, washed, cut into pieces, cooked in salted water, and used like potatoes to accompany MEAT or FISH. Flour is also extracted to makes, SOUPS, STEWS, BREADS, and BISCUITS. The starchy leaves are prepared like SPINACH (West Indian brédes). BITTER MANIOC is used in the food industry. It contains a poisonous juice, which contains hydrocyanic acid, which is eliminated by washing; the fresh roots are then grated and left to ferment. The starch is extracted by centrifugation, cooked, crushed, dried, and, ad into TAPIOCA. In Brazil MANIOC is used to make a spirit called CAVIM.

MARIGOLD:

A garden plant with yellow flowers, the petals of which were once used to heighten the color of BUTTER. Traditionally they are used to enrich such dishes as JERSEY CONGER SOUP (with cabbage, leeks, and peas), garnish GREEN SALADS, and season VINEGAR. Alexandre Dumas proposed an herb soup à la dauphine, which included MARIGOLD FLOWERS. Special care must be taken not to boil the slightly bitter petals.

MARSH MARIGOLD:

A vigorous colonizing meadow plant, also known in France as souci d'eau, the flower buds of which are pickled in vinegar and used like CAPERS.

MARSH MALLOW:

A medicinal plant (Althaea officinalis) with sweet-tasting roots used to make cough lozenges and syrup. The mucilage from the roots was formerly used to make the spongy sweet known as MARSHMALLOWS, Now, however, MARSHMELLOWS are prepared with SUGAR, FLAVORING, COLORING then either STARCH and GELATIN or GUM ARABIC and EGG WHITE.

MARSHMALLOWS are commonly eaten as a sweet; in the United States they are also used as an ingredient in cooking to make cakes, ice cream (ROCKY ROADS ICE CREAM the most popular), icings, (frostings), and sauces.

MARJORAM:

A herb of which there are various types, the most popular being sweet MARJORAM (Origanum majorana) and WILD MARJORAM (Origanum vulgare), more commonly known as OREGANO. SWEET MARJORAM is one of the most popular herbs in European cookery; it has a strong aromatic scent but a fairly delicate flavor, which is good in SALADS and combines well with MEAT, GAME, POULTRY, PULSES, and some VEGETABLES, particularly CARROTS, SALSIFY, and CUCUMBER. To avoid losing its mild flavor with prolonged cooking it is best added towards the end of the cooking period.

Wild Marjoram, or OREGANO, has a much more pungent flavor that is popular in Mediterranean dishes, such has pasta and pizza sauces and tomato dishes. In Greece it is used

frequently with lamb. When dried, both sweet and wild marjoram become much stronger in flavor and should be used sparingly.

MELOKIA:

A plant of the MALLOW family, with green slightly serrated leaves, several species of which are cultivated in Egypt and Israel as a green vegetable. The leaves may be eaten raw in a salad or cooked like spinach. MALOKHIA, a popular soup in Egypt, is made with fried onions and fried crushed garlic and coriander, cooked in very fatty beef stock with chopped MELOKIA leaves. It can be served with lemon juice and is often thickened with rice.

MINT (MENTHE)

A very fragrant aromatic plant of the genus Mentha, used in infusions, to flavor liqueurs, sweets, and syrups, and as culinary herb. There are about 25 species, widely distributed in temperate and subtropical regions. GARDEN MINT, or SPEARMINT is the most common. Its leaves are used to flavor SAUCES (Particularly MINT SAUCE) and SALADS, in cooking VEGETABLES (especially peas and potatoes), and to season ROAST LAMB and other MEAT dishes. Infusing the leaves makes MINT Tea. Dried mint will retain its flavor for two years.

Other species used in cookery are WATER MINT and HORSEMINT, both water-loving mints. The leaves of PEPPERMINT produce very pungent oil used mainly in confectionery and to flavor spirits, liqueur, jellies, etc. BERGAMOT or eau-de-Cologne mint is a Mediterranean species, MENTHA CITRATA, which produces a lemon-scented essential oil similar to essence of BERGAMOT. It is rarer but in great demand because of its fruity flavor and used to flavor DRINKS and MARINADES. Japanese MINT (Menthe du Japon) is the species from which menthol is extracted. Menthe à l'eau (Peppermint Cordial) is a refreshing DRINK made of syrup mixed with still or CARBONATE WATER:

MIMOSA:

An ornamental species of ACACIA whose yellow flowers can be made into fritters and used to garnish salads, and prepare homemade liqueur.

The name is also given to certain egg dishes using sieved hard-boiled (hard-cooked) egg yolk (which superficially resembles MIMOSA flowers), particularly a cold hors d'oeuvre consisting of stuffed hard-boiled eggs. The yolk is sieved mixed with mayonnaise and parsley, and piped in flower shapes into the egg-white cases. MIMOSA salads are mixed salads sprinkled with sieved hard-boiled egg yolk.

MYRTLE:

A Mediterranean shrub whose aromatic evergreen leaves has aflavor like that of JUNIPER and ROSEMARY. MYRTLE leaves are used particularly in Corsican and Scandinavian cookery, to flavor ROAST THRUSHES, BOAR, CHARCUTERIE, and BOUILLABAISSE. An essence extracted from the leaves is used to prepare a liqueur, NERTO. The Romans used MYRTLE leaves and BERRIES extensively for flavoring RAGOUTS and certain WINES.

NIGELLA:

Any of several chiefly Mediterranean plants of the genus NIGELLA (family Ranunculaceae), also known as fennel flower, whose aromatic or pungent seeds were formerly used as a seasoning. The seeds of the species NIGELLA sativa, also known as black CUMIN, ALLSPICE, and (in France) POIVRETTE and quatre-épices, can be used as a substitute for pepper. Seeds of the species NIGELLA damascene (cultivated as the garden plant love-in-a-mist in temperate regions) are scattered over BREAD and CAKES in Eastern countries.

NASTURTIUM:

Cultivated for its decorative qualities, this plant is a native of Peru. The brilliant orange and red flowers and the PEPPERY-TASTING leaves can be used in SALADS. The seeds pods can be pickled and used like CAPERS.

NETTLE: (ORTIE)

A plant whose leaves have stinging hairs, which cause a rash on contact; because of this, people are generally unaware of its therapeutic qualities and its food value. The young leaves of the annual small NETTLE can be chopped and used in SALADS. The leaves of perennial large, or common, NETTLE can be used in GREEN VEGETABLE SOUPS, on they're own or combined with SORREL, LEEKS, WATERCRESS, or CABBAGE, thickened with BROAD BEANS or POTATOES. Both types of NETTLES are even richer in iron than spinach and contain the same amount of vitamin A and C.

ORANGE BLOSSOM:

The fragrant flowers of the bitter (Seville) orange, which are macerated and distilled to produce orange-flower water. This is manufactured on an industrial scale and in patisserie and confectionery. ORANGE BLOSSOM is also used to make drinks, and orange-flower sugar is used in patisserie. The essential oil of ORANGE BLOSSOM, called NEROLI oil, is used in PERFUMERY and for flavoring foods.

OREGANO: (WILD MARJORAM)

This aromatic herb has been used for centuries in Asia and Europe and is now especially popular in Italy, was it is used in PIZZAS. It is also used with TOMATOES, CHEESE, BEANS, and EGGPLANT. There are also many GREEK VARIETIES, collectively called RIGANI, the flowers of which are used to garnish MEAT DISHES.

PALM TREE (Palmier)

Any of numerous tropical trees belonging to the family PALMAE. Many species are commercially important as a source of food, notably the DATE PALM, COCONUT PALM, and SAGO PALM. Some Palms, especially the CABBAGE PALM, have edible terminal BUDS (see PALM HEARTS) and others yield SUGAR, OIL, and VEGETABLE 'BUTTER'. The sap of some species is fermented to produce WINE.

PALMYRA: (Borassus)

A palm tree of Asia and Africa with edible BUDS and young shoots. The pulp of the fruits is made into a kind of flour used in numerous local dishes; in Sri Lanka, it is also used to make a popular JAM. The fruit may also be eaten either raw or roasted. The SAP can be used in the preparation of fermented DRINKS.

PARSLEY: (Persil)

An herb originating in southern Europe and cultivated mainly for its aromatic leaves, which are used to flavor or garnish many dishes.

Before the reign of Charlemagne, PARSLEY was thought to have magic powers, but since then it has become one of the most commonly used plants in cookery. There are three varieties of parsley. COMMON PARSLEY, which has flat relatively smooth leaves, has the most flavors. CURLY-LEAVED PARSLEY, which has bright green crinkly leaves, is used mostly as a garnish. TURNIP-ROOTED PARSLEY is cultivated for it-swollen root, which is cooked like CELERIAK (CELERY ROOT) and used in SOUPS. It is eaten in Eastern Europe, particularly in Austria, Germany, Hungary, and the Soviet Union. In France, various other plants are known as PARSLEY. Neapolitan or CELERY-LEAVED PARSLEY (persil noir) is a type of wild CELERY; CORIANDER is known as Arabian or Chinese PARSLEY, and DILL is commonly called Russian or Swedish PARSLEY.

In cookery, fresh PARSLEY is an ingredient of a BOQUET GARNI and is used in MARINADES and STOCKS. When mixed with chopped GARLIC it is often served with sautée or fried dishes. Chopped Parsley is frequently added during the final preparation of a dish or is sprinkled over

PARSLEY continue

food just before serving. Fried Parsley is used a garnish for fried items. Finely chopped PARSLEY is used to flavor BUTTER, SAUCES (particularly RAVIGOTE SAUCE, GREEN SAUCE, ITALIAN, MAITRE d'HÔTEL, and POULETTE SAUCE), and VINAIGRETTES. PARSLEY can be dried and also freezes well.

In former times meat was 'larded' with PARSLEY (i.e. PARSLEY was inserted into it); in Le Bourgeois Gentilome (1670), Molière mention s ' loin of mutton rich with parsley'.

PLANTAIN:

Any of various species of common herbaceous plant found growing in the wild. The young leaves may be used in salads or soups.

For Plantain Bananas, see banana.

PRIMROSE:  (PRIMEVÉRE)

A meadow and woodland plant whose pale yellow flowers appear in springs. Its young tender leaves can be eaten as a SALAD, and its flowers are used for decorating SALADS and for herb TEAS. PRIMROSE flowers are also used in several cookery recipes, including a dish of roast veal cooked in butter with sliced onions, carrots, and a bouquet garni, moistened with white wine, to which PRIMROSE flowers are added 30 minutes before cooking is finished; the cooking liquid is deglazed with port and thickened with cream.

PURSLANE: (POURPIER)

A hardy plant, which originated in India, was known by the Romans, and was used in the Middle Age particularly for pickling. There are several varieties, including the GOLDEN PURSLANE with large leaves and the CLAYTONE de CUBA (cultivated in the north of France and in Belgium). Rich in MAGNESIUM and with a slightly spicy flavor, this variety can be eaten as a salad, flavored with BURNET. The fleshy young leaves and the tender stalks can be cooked like spinach and CARDOONS (particularly with gravy, butter, or cream); the leaves can also be used as a garnish for SOUPS, OMELETTES, and joints of meat (instead of WATERCRESS) or to flavor sauces (Béarnaise or Paloise).

QUASSIA:

A shrub, found in tropical areas of America, the wood of which was traditionally used to make apéritifs and tonics. Fizzy drinks and bitters are flavored with Quassine, the bitter extract of QUASSIA.

RAMPION (Raiponce)

A plant of the campanula family with edible roots. These may be eaten raw in salads, for which they are cut into pieces and usually mixed with BEETROOT (red beet) or CELERY; or they can be cooked in the same way as SALSIFY or TURNIPS. The leaves, which have a refreshing taste, can also be eaten in salads or cooked like SPINACH. RAMPION is rarely used in cooking today.

RAPE:

A plant related to the cabbage that is widely cultivated for the oil contained in its seeds. It was extensively cultivated in France before the introduction of groundnut (peanut) oil, and is currently regaining some of its former popularity. Although the seeds are rich in oil, they also contain toxin that have been removed. RAPESSED oil cannot be heated to very high temperatures, but it keeps well and remains in a liquid state down to freezing point (0 c.) The flower buds of RAPE may be eaten in the same way as broccoli.

RHUBARB:

A hardy perennial plant, originally from northern Asia, whose fleshy stalks are used as a pie filling or to make jams or compotes. It was the English who first introduced RHUBARB to the kitchen: until the 18th century it was regarded as a medicinal and ornamental plant. The normal growing season last from May to July, but early forced RHUBARB is delicious, bright pink, and tender; it is available from January to April. With a calorific value of only 16 Cal per 100 g, RHUBARB is very sour and must always be sweetened. It contains phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, iron, and vitamins. The leaves contain a large amount of oxalic acid and should not be eaten. There are many varieties of RHUBARB, with stalks rancin from green to varying shades of maue. The stalks should be firm, thick, and crisp and release sap when snapped. They will keep for some days in a cool place, but quickly becomes soft; however, RHUBARB jams and compotes are often flavored with lemon zest or GINGER. The compote may also accompany fish, and RHUBARB can be made into CHUTNEY. An Italian apéritif, RABARBARO, is made from RHUBARB.

ROCKET: (ARUGULA)

A Mediterranean plant, with a pungent taste and smell, whose young leaves are eaten as a salad or used for flavoring salads. They should be gathered before flowering, when smooth and hairless, as later the taste becomes too mustardy. ROCKET is one of the traditional ingredients of the PROVENÇALE MESCLUM.

ROSELLE:  (OSEILLE DE GUINÉE)

A species of tropical HIBISCUS (Hibiscus sabdariffa), also known as Jamaica SORREL, used as a condiment. The petals, which have a bitter taste, are used to flavor fish and meat sauce in India and Jamaica, while the red fruits are made into a jam and into a refreshing sour drink called KARKADE, which is very popular in Egypt. (Also called SORREL or FLOR de JAMAICA).

ROSE:

The flower of the rose blush, whose perfumed and colored petals are used for flavoring cakes, creams, confectionery, etc. Rose-petal jam, very popular in the Middle East and the Balkans, is made from damask rose petals macerated in sugar. In France, Provins is the center of rose flavored confectionery: petal jam, rose flavored bonbons, rose jelly, crystallized (candied) rose petals, etc.

ROSEMARY:

An aromatic shrub native to Mediterranean countries, whose evergreen leaves are used either fresh or dried as a flavoring. As they have a very pungent taste, only a few leaves are needed to flavor a marinade, a ragout, a game dish, or a grill. The names come from the Latin rosmarinus (rose of the sea) and the herb combines particularly well with VEAL; it is also used in some TOMATO SAUCE and with oven cooked fish. In northern Europe it is used to flavor sausage meat, sucking pig, and roast lamb. In addition, a sprig of ROSEMARY gives a delicate flavor to the milk used for desert. The flowers can be used to garnish salads and they can be crystallized (candied) in the same way as violets. ROSEMARY HONEY, a specialty of Narbonne in France, is much esteemed.

RUE:

A perennial herbaceous plant with small grayish-blue bitter-tasting leaves. It is an ancient herbal remedy, and during the Middle Ages was among the plants used for making liqueurs. Traditionally it was used to flavor the herb-based HIPPOCRAS. Nowadays, its use is banned in France due to the mistaken idea that it can induce abortion. In Italy, however, it is used to flavor grappa (a marc brandy) - a small bunch of fresh RUE springs is put into the bottle to macerate. In Eastern Europe it is an ingredient of meat stuffings and is added to flavor creams cheese and marinades.

SAGE: (SAUGE)

A perennial herb that grows in temperate climates and is widely cultivated for its leaves, which have an aromatic slightly bitter flavor and are used for flavoring fatty meats (e.g. pork), forcemeats, marinades, certain cheeses (including the English SAGE DARBY), and various drinks, SAGE is traditionally considered to have curative properties: the name comes from the Latin salvus (safe, in good health).

Four varieties of SAGE are used in France. As well as GARDEN SAGE (known as GRANDE SAUGE in France), which has thick oblong hairy leaves, grayish-green in color, there is the small Provençale SAGE (petite sauge), the most highly prized variety, with smaller paler leaves and a more pronounced flavor; the CATALONIAN SAGE, which is even smaller, and smallest of all, the CLARY SAGE, which has curly hairy leaves and is used to make Italian Vermouth (it was formerly used to make fritters). In France, SAGE is used mainly in Provance, for cooking white meat and certain vegetables soups. It is used more frequently in Italian cuisine: PICCATA, SALTIMBOCCA, OSSO BUCO, PAUPIETTES, and RICE minestrone are flavored with SAGE. In Britain and Flanders, SAGE and onion are used for poultry and pork stuffing's and to flavor sauces. In Germany, ham, sausages, and sometimes beer are flavored with sage, and in Balkans and the Middle East it is eaten with roast mutton. In China, tea is flavored with SAGE.

SALAD BURNED: (PIMPRENELLE)

A hardy perennial herb whose serrated gray-green leaves have a cool cucumber like flavor. It is used to season omelettes, cold sauces, marinades, and soups and its tender young leaves can be used in salads like WATERCRESS. BURNET can also be used, like BORAGE, in cooling drinks and for flavoring vinegar.

SAVORY: (SARRIETTE)

An aromatic herb, originating from southern Europe, with a scent resembling MINT and THYME. Its name is derived from the Latin satureia (satyr's herb), a reference to the aphrodisiac qualities once attributed to it. There are two species. The annual summer SAVORY, with silvery green leaves, is the species usually used in cooking. The perennial winter SAVORY, with narrower stiffer leaves, is used mostly for flavoring soft goats - or ewes' - milk cheeses and certain marinades; in Provence it has the nickname of poivre d'ane (ass's pepper). Dried or (preferably) fresh SAVORY is the most popular herb for flavoring pulses. Fresh SAVORY is also used to flavor Provençle salads, grilled (broiled) veal, roast lamb, and loin of pork. When dried, it is used to flavor peas, ragouts, soups, forcemeats, and pates.

SEDUM:

A fleshy plant, which grows in dry places, two common species being the wall pepper (Sedum acre) and the white stonecrop (Sedum album). The plants used to be eaten as vegetables and were recommended in particularly by Oliver de Serres in the 17th century. The Icelanders and Lapps still eat the roots and the Swedes use the stalks in salads.

SHEA:

A tree from tropical Africa with oval fruit containing oily seeds. When the seeds are dried and crushed they yield a white butter-like fat rich in calcium and vitamins, called SHEA BUTTER. This is used instead of cooking fat in certain African countries. It can also be used to make SOAP and CANDLES:

SMALLAGE (Ache des Marais)

An umbelliferous plant, also called WILD CELERY,, from which cultivated CELERY originated; it was used as a seasoning in Greek and Roman times. This wild plant can be included in salads and also serves as an ingredient in medicinal syrup and TISANES.

SORREL: (OSEILLE)

A culinary plant originating in northern Asia and Europe; its edible green leaves have a slightly bitter taste (from the oxalic acid they contain). It has only 25 Cal per 100 g and is rich in Potassium, Magnesium, and vitamin C. In France several varieties with large or small crinkled leaves, either dark or pale green, are available from March to August; the most common variety is the 'LARGE de BELLEVILLE'. When SORREL is for sale it should be shiny and firm will keep for some days in the refrigerator. It is prepared and cooked in the same way of spinach; when made into a purée or shredded, it can be given extra smoothness by adding a white roux or some cream. SORREL is a traditional accompaniment for fish (shad, pike) and veal (topside (rump), breast). It can also be used as a filling for omelettes, as an accompaniment to eggs en cocotte, and to prepare soup and velouté sauce. When the leaves are very young and tender they can be eaten in a salad.

TANSY: (TANAISIE)

Common European plant golden-yellow aromatic flowers. Its leaves have a bitter flavor and were included UN the pharmacopoeias compiled by monks in the middle Ages. They are still occasionally used for seasoning, particularly in northern Europe and Britain, in forcemeats, pies, marinades, courts bouillons, and sometimes also pastries. In former times, a highly flavored household liqueur was made with TANSY. When Stanislas Lezcynski 'invented' the BABA, he sprinkled it with TANSY WATER.

TARRAGON: (ESTREGON)

An aromatic perennial plant originating in Central Asia. Its name is derived, via the Arabic tarkhun, from the Greek drakontion (a serpent-eating bird) - the herb was formerly reputed to cure snakebite.

The tooth green leaves have a fine delicate flavor, and are used to season salads, sauces, pickles, etc. They may be fresh or they may be preserved by drying or freezing. Russian TARRAGON is lighter in color and more piquant, but does not have such a delicate taste.

TARO:

A perennial plant grown in tropical regions for its large starchy tuberous zomes, which have twice the calorific value of the potato. TARO is originally come from India (where it is called katchu). It is known as chu-chine or chou caribe in Martinique malanga in Cuba and Haiti, songe in Réunion, and madère in Guadalupe. Up to 40 cm long, the roots have a smooth skin and are variously coloured - white, purplish-blue, red, or yellowish, according to the variety. They are scrubbed and peeled, then used in the same way as the potato: boiled, fried, or cooked au gratin, etc. In China, balls of steamed TARO are stuffed with meat then fried. In Japan it is used in the vegetable stews. In Haiti, the grated raw pulp is used to prepare acras. TARO is also used in sweet dessert.

THYME: (THYM)

A perennial plant with small gray-green aromatic leaves and small purplish flowers much used as s culinary herb and also to prepare infusions. THYME contains an essential oil, THYMOL, which has a very aromatic odor and antiseptic properties. THYME is one of the basic herbs used in cooking. Alone or in a BOUQUET GARNI, fresh or dried, it is used in stuffings, casseroles, stews, soups, baked fish, etc. Fresh THYME is particularly good for flavoring scrambled eggs, salads, tomato dishes, and lentils. It is also used in the preparation of certain home-made liqueurs.

Wild THYME (called serpolet in France) has clusters of rose-pink flowers and a less pronounced flavor than the GARDEN THYME. It is used mostly with chicken or white meats, and in Provençale cookery (where it is called farigoule or farigoulette) it is traditionally used to flavor trout, mutton, and rabbit. It is also used in the production of a liqueur.

TURTLE HERBS: (HERBE À TORTUE)

A mixture of aromatic herbs (basil, marjoram, chervil, savory, and fennel), used to flavor TURTLE SOUP and also TURTLE SAUCE, which is served with calf's head and boiled ox (beef) tongue. 

VERBENA: (LEMON-SCENTED VERBENA)

Any of several ornamental flowering plants. This herb is native to South America, and was introduced to Europe by Spanish. It can be used to impart a lemon flavor to DRINKS and SALADS. Available fresh or dried. DRIED powdered VERBENA leaves can be added to meat and fish stuffings to give a delicate flavor.

VERVAIN:

Often confused with VERBENA, this ancient European herb is mainly used to make HERB TEA. Available as dried leaves.

VERONICA: (VÉRONIQUE)

A genus of plants of which there are numerous species found throughout temperate regions. VERONICA officinalis, the common speedwell, nicknamed the 'tea of Europe' in France, was used as long ago as the early 18th century as a substitute for TEA. VERONICA beccabunga, the brooklime, often confused with WATERCRESS, can be eaten raw in salads or cooked like spinach.

VIOLET: (VIOLETTE)

A small perennial plant whose purple flowers, when newly opened, may be used to decorate salads or in stuffings for poultry or fish. The sweet VIOLET, a common European species, was formerly used in a cough medicine; nowadays, it is used mainly in confectionery and preserves. Crystallized (candied) VIOLETS are a specialty of Toulouse and are popular in Britain: the complete flowers are immersed in sugar syrup, sometimes colored, which is allowed to come up to the boil. After crystallization they are drained and dried, then used as decoration or to aromatize desserts, sometimes with crystallized MIMOSA flowers. Sweet (candies) can be made with cooked sugar perfumed with essence of VIOLETS and colored and molded in the shape of VIOLET.

WOODRUFF: (SWEET WOODRUFF)

Indigenous to Europe, Asia and North Africa, WOODRUFF leaves are used in German and Austria cooking-in BRAISED BEEF DISHES, and in WINE CUP, in particularly, GERMAN MAY WINE. Available as dried leaves.

YARROW:

A plant that grows wild in Europe. YARROW is similar to CHERVIL in flavor, though slightly bitter. It may be used in SALADS.



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