The meandering thoughts of a modern-day hearth witch.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Herbcraft // Dill

Dill is one of my favourite herbs - I absolutely love its flavour, largely, I think, because it brings back such strong memories of happy travelling experiences in Russia and Scandinavia, where it is native and used widely in culinary preparation.

Dill looks a lot like fennel, due to its bright green, feathery leaves and umbrellas of tiny flowers which turn to seed. However, it does not have the same aniseed scent, instead offering a sweeter, more subtle flavour that compliments fish well. The seeds are traditionally added to pickles in Russian and Scandinavian cuisine, and coupled with yoghurt and cucumber, make a fresh, cooling dip. More on the culinary uses of Dill to come later...

Medicinally, Dill has historically been used as a digestive aid, acting as a carminative, preventing gas and intestinal bloating. The seeds and leaves can be used in any number of recipes to calm the digestive system.  Dill's essential oil can also be used to encourage milk production in breastfeeding women. However, Dill should be avoided during pregnancy.

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