Plant Profile: Dill

dill

Although not a staple of American cuisine, DILL is a fantastic herb to grow in your garden … and to bring into your kitchen.

Dill is a native of the Mediterranean region and southern Russia (which makes it no surprise that dill is so ubiquitous in Russian cooking). A hardy annual herb, dill grows to about 2 1/2 feet tall, has feathery green leaves, and produces various heads with yellow flowers. Like fennel, dill’s flowers attract many pollinators while providing a wispy flash of color.

We most likely know dill from its use (particularly the seeds) in making pickles, or using its leaves as flavoring for soups and sauces. Dill seeds are also used for flavoring cakes and pastries.

Dill has medicinal uses, too. The “fruit” and oil of dill has been used for calming the stomach and eliminating gas, and has stimulant and aromatic properties. Learn more about dill’s history and uses here: http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/d/dill–13.html.

Here is a fun recipe featuring dill (as well as mint, which we featured recently): http://www.theppk.com/2011/07/cucumber-avocado-tea-sandwiches-with-fresh-herbs/. We made these for a TCA board meeting a few months ago and were blown away by the deliciousness of the sandwiches.

Do you have any special uses for dill?

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