Tag: Herbs

Pistou, a Fragrance of the Provence Region

16 August, 2010 No Comments

Vegetable soup with pistou, which is almost a meal in itself, is the pride of Provence. The term «pistou», often confused with the neighbouring and perhaps more well known Ligurian «pesto», means «crushed».

laurier bay leaf

Bay leaf – the symbol of victory and wisdom

14 August, 2010 1 Comment

Native to the Mediterranean region, the bay laurel is a perennial shrub with spearheaded leaves that release a very strong fragrance when crushed, as they are rich in essential oils. Bay or laurel leaves are an essential component of the “bouquet garni“, a blend of aromatic herbs that is used in a variety of recipes […]

sarriette savory

How About a Savory Aphrodisiac?

7 August, 2010 No Comments

Savory is an aromatic perennial herb that originated in the Mediterranean region and it includes at least 15 species, of which Summer savory (Hortensis) and Winter savory (Montana) are the most common.

All About Pesto

2 August, 2010 No Comments

For a Northern Italian like me, Pesto is serious business. Did you know that the original version, known as ‘Pesto alla Genovese’, is in the process of obtaining a Protected Designation of Origin by the European Union?

ciboulette chive

Colourful and Savoury Chives

The chive is a bulbous plant that belongs to the Alliaceae family, along with onions, leeks, garlic and shallots. The exact origin of this aromatic herb remains unknown.

basilic basil

Basil, a royal herb

Basil gets its name from the Latin word “Basilicum” and from the Greek term “Basilikos”, both of which mean “royal”. It’s certainly a fitting term, since this culinary herb demands royal treatment for its proper cultivation.

aneth dill

Dill-icious leaves and seeds

17 July, 2010 1 Comment

Dill, which is very popular in Eastern Europe, Russia and Scandinavia, produces leaves and seeds that are used as seasoning – not only in meats, fish and sauces but also in marinades, liqueurs and jams.

persil parsley

Curly Parsley, Flat Parsley

Originating in the Mediterranean region of Europe, parsley has been consumed for at least 5,000 years. It was introduced in America by the first European colonists and quickly spread far and wide.

Tarragon, the unknown ‘Queen of Herbs’

The medicinal properties of tarragon have been widely appreciated for a very long time: The Greeks and Romans used it to treat toothaches and snake bites. From the Middle Ages onwards, European monks cultivated it, among other things as a cure for hiccups. These days, it is still found in herbalists’ shops and an essential […]

Peppermint and spearmint

19 June, 2010 1 Comment

It’s hard to pinpoint the exact number of species that belong to the ‘Mentha’ genus because they cross breed so easily, giving rise to many natural hybrids. Mint grows so effortlessly in all the moderate climates around the world that, in several places, it is regarded as weeds.

Once upon a thyme

Thyme is native to the Mediterranean region and Asia Minor. Although more than a hundred different types of this herb have been identified, the two most popular varieties of common thyme are French thyme (or summer thyme) and English thyme (or winter thyme). While the former is more flavourful, it is the latter that is […]

Rosemary, a fragrance from Provence

Rosemary, like all other aromatic herbs, is primarily recognized for its medicinal properties that have been revealed over the centuries. While Egyptians placed sprigs of rosemary in their pharaoh’s tombs to fortify their souls, Greeks used it to improve their memory and to stimulate their intellect. In this day and age, rosemary is used in […]

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