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Dill: Itís Not Just For Pickling


Did you know that dill was used by Hippocrates as an application on burns suffered by soldiers in ancient Rome? Dill is not just used for pickling or as an added herb to certain dishes, but has medicinal qualities as well. 

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. Derived from the Norse word dilla; it means to lull. Thus, this herb is used to induce sleep and is a great insomnia reliever. 

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 which is important for reducing 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. Simply chop a little dill and mix it with plain low fat yogurt. Did you also know that 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 has been used for both its culinary and medicinal properties for thousands of years. Furthermore, dill is widely used in Scandinavian cuisine due to its light and delicate flavor. It compliments fish dishes; goes well with smoked salmon, cheese, egg dishes, sour cream and yogurt. Dill seeds have a much stronger flavor and in combination with vinegar and spices make a great pickling agent. They are partnered with cucumbers to make dill pickles. Dill seed is a very good source of calcium, dietary fiber, as well as the minerals manganese, iron, and magnesium. 

Dill can be planted as seeds in your garden; and you they don't require much care, which is perfect if you are not considered a gardener. If you prefer to purchase it, you can be sure most supermarkets carry fresh dill. In fact, if you have ever tuned into the food network, you will know what to do when you take it home. Run it under water, clean, wrap in paper towels; put into a zip lock bag and youíre set to use it at any time. Yummo!


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