How are Herbs Used?

A herb is a plant of which the leaves can be used for food, medicine, perfume, or for flavor in cooking. Herbs and spices can transform an ordinary, everyday meal into something special. As some herbs are very strong and piquant in flavor, however, they should be used sparingly. Some of the most popular herbs in this country are listed  below.

Basil, a sweet, mild herb with a rather peppery  taste, goes well with all kinds of savory and salads dishes. Sage is good with rich meals. It is strong in flavor, with a rather bitter fragrance. Sage leaves are sometimes wrapped round cheeses to give them flavor.

Thyme. There are several varieties of thyme, which originated in the Mediterranean countries. The best-known varieties are garden thyme and scented lemon thyme. It is a strong spicy herb, and it is used fresh or dried. Cloves can be used in sweet or savory dishes.

They are the flowers of the clove-tree, which grows in the Molucca Islands. Cloves are sweets, fragrant spices , and can be used either whole or ground. Mint, popular for its flavor and fragrance, is named after Mintha, a nymph of Greek mythology! the goddess Persephone, according to the story, in a jealous rage turned her beautiful rival, mintha into this plant.

The mints belong to the family labiatae, which also includes many other herbs such as thyme, sage, marjoram and rosemary. The commonest wild species of mint in this country is the water mint, but we generally use garden mint for flavoring mint sauce or chewing-gum. Catmint, or catnip, which is so attractive  to cats, also belong to this family.

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