Thursday, May 6, 2010

Dill - Herb of the Year

Dill, Anethum graveolens, has been designated as Herb of the Year by the International Herb Association. This choice is made based on a herbs diversity of uses - culinary, medicinal, fragrant, attractive to bees etc. Special thanks to David Brill for this creative Dill Peace sign photo. The green is dill weed, the brown is dill seed.

This brief information on dill was taken from Bertha Reppert's book Herbs with Confidence. One of our favorite books because of its practical information, friendly style with which it is written and herbs listed in alphabetical design. If you are looking for a beginner books on herbs this is the one.

An annual reaching 3-4 feet, one of the best herbs grown by seeds, dill seeds from your pantry shelf can be used as long as they are less than 3 years old. Sprinkle the seeds sparsely in a shallow area of a well prepared bed. In about two months you will have a fresh crop of seeds. Collect the seed heads to use with pickles, dry some and allow some to self-sow. If dill is happy in your garden it will re seed.

Used for protection against witchcraft, a soothing tea for colicky babies, flavor for favorite pickles- what more could one ask? Dill is all of this and more, so grow lots of dill in your garden.

The name dill comes from an old Anglo-Saxon word "dilla" which means "to dull" because it soothing to infants for teething and digestion.

Dill weed enhances egg dishes, soups, veggies, most an tiresome recipe can be sparked by this remarkable herb. Dill has so many culinary uses it is hard to know where to begin. Dill vinegar to flavor salads, sauces, green beans and dill butter gives the sweetly pungent flavor of dill to almost any dish. Simply mince 3 T dill weed into a pound of butter, blend and mellow for several days. Try this on your lunch sandwich and you will be delighted by the piquant flavor. Add it to cubed new potatoes for dilled potatoes. Enjoy!


Marilyn said...

Thanks for the post on dill. Tomorrow I will be mixing dill weed in with mayonnaise for cucumber sandwiches. Reminiscent of a cucumber sandwich I had in a lovely garden in Vermont a few years ago.

Valerie Zagami said...

Great Photo, thanks David, I love dill and have 2 types of it sprouting right now... Yummm.