Thyme – An under used Herb
Thyme has been used by humans for many centuries and is related to the mint family. In early Egypt thyme was used for embalming and thought to assist in the passage from this life to the next. I wonder if Cleopatra knew that. The ancient Greeks and Romans were also interested in this delicious herb. They used it for incense, put it in their baths, and believed that it promoted Thyme Plantcourage. These masters of the Mediterranean used thyme as aromatic flavoring for their cheeses and liqueurs as well.
Thyme is available in both fresh and dried forms. Fresh is clearly more flavorful, however less convenient, as it is not always available. It is sold in bunches of sprigs and can be substituted with dried when fresh is not available. Some recipes call for fresh sprigs and the dried form only comes in leaves. Don’t let that bother you as you can use this herbs leaves generously. Thyme leaves are generally curled and oval shaped. They are small at an eighth of an inch long. The top of the leaf is a green-grey color. The bottom of the leaf is whitish in color. Try some thyme on your next meat dish. It does well with beef, chicken, fish, lamb, and venison. Don’t forget about the vegetables. Thyme enhances the flavor of carrots, onions, peas, potatoes, tomatoes, and soups.
Try this for dinner next time for a change. 1) Oven Baked Pork Loin with Olive Oil, Garlic, Oregano and Thyme. 2) Roasted Chicken with Lemon and Thyme. 3) Any type of Beef Roast with Rosemary and Thyme.
There is more you should know. It is healthy for you too! Thyme contains very nice quantities of Vitamin C, Iron, Manganese, Copper, and Fiber. So there you have it. Thyme is easy to find at any grocery store. It enhances the flavor of a variety of foods. And it is good for you. What are you waiting for? Live a little and use some of this herb today.