Dill Seed- Also known as Anethum Graveolens
Dill is a unique plant in that both its leaves and seeds are used as a seasoning. Dill’s green leaves are wispy and fernlike and have a soft, sweet taste. Dried dill seeds are light brown in color and oval in shape, featuring one flat side and one convex ridged side. The seeds are similar in taste to caraway, featuring a flavor that is aromatic, sweet and citrusy, but also slightly bitter. Dill’s name comes from the Old Norse word “dilla” which means “to lull”. This name reflects dill’s traditional uses as both a carminative stomach soother and an insomnia reliever. Dill is scientifically known as Anethum graveolens and is part of the Umbelliferae family, whose other members include parsley, cumin and bay.
Dill is native to southern Russia, western Africa and the Mediterranean region. It has been used for its culinary and medicinal properties for millennia. Dill was mentioned both in the Bible and in ancient Egyptian writings. It was popular in the ancient Greek and Roman cultures, where it was considered a sign of wealth and was revered for its many healing properties. Dill was used by Hippocrates, the father of medicine, in a recipe for cleaning the mouth. Ancient soldiers would apply burnt dill seeds to their wounds to promote healing. The curative properties of dill have been honored throughout history. The Conqueror Charlemagne even made it available on his banquet tables, so his guests who indulged too much could benefit from its carminative properties.
Providing a tangy addition to pickles, salad dressing and fish dishes, fresh dill is available at markets during the summer and early fall while dried dill is available throughout the year. The seeds are stronger and more flavorful than the leaves and are most commonly associated with the cuisines of Scandinavia and Germany. Its green leaves are wispy and fernlike and have a soft, sweet taste. The green dill leaves have a sweet aroma and taste. When dried, the dill seeds are similar in taste to caraway seeds, and have a sweet and citric type flavor but slightly buttery as well.
The components in dill oil act as protective neutralizers in carcinogens such as: cigarettes smoke, charcoal grill smoke, and trash incinerator smoke. This oil also prevents bacteria growth, much in the same way as garlic. In addition to its aforementioned properties, dill is a very good source of calcium −key in counteracting the bone loss that occurs after menopause and in some conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis.
Crushed dill seeds, when diluted with water, can be used as a nail-strengthening bath. When chewed, dill seeds can be highly effective in curing bad breath. It can also be used to relieve stomach symptoms. One tablespoonful of dill seed contains as much calcium as one-third cup of milk. Also, dill tea is used as a stomach soother, to overcome insomnia, and even to cure hiccups. In its diluted form, it may be used as a remedy for gas in infants. Dill seed is a very good source of calcium, dietary fiber, as well as the minerals manganese, iron, and magnesium.
In one of our most delicious Persian dishes, dill weed is used in abundance with green baby lima beans and saffron, it is also added to Yogurt( we do not use Dairy in our personal food regimen)
Persian Medicine has a verity uses for this amazing Herb.