Dill or Anethum graveolens


Dill is a dainty, fragile herb. It can’t take the heat, so the best time to grow it is in the spring and fall, depending on where you live. You'll begin to see it more often in the grocery stores now too.

Dill pairs well with the delicate tastes of early spring vegetables like peas, asparagus, and new potatoes as well as carrots and beets. It's delicious in egg salad, creamy sauces, and with most fish.

Dried dill leaves are not as flavorful as fresh ones, so you might need more if you're using some from your herb and spice pantry.

On the other hand, dill seed is quite pungent and is usually found in pickling spices, sauerkraut and salad dressings.

The name of the dill plant comes from an Anglo-Saxon word meaning "to soothe or to lull." Both the fresh leaves and the seed have been used for thousands of years, with written records going back over 5000 years to Egypt and Babylon.

Gladiators in Rome and Greece were fed meals covered with dill, as it was believed to impart valor and courage, perhaps by calming down their panic-stricken hearts!

Primarily, dill is used for soothing the stomach and gas pains. Dill water is an old folk remedy for colic, and is made by adding 1-5 drops of high-quality food-grade oil of dill to 1-2 tablespoons of water.

Dill seeds were also called "meetinghouse" seeds because they were often chewed in England during long church services to keep children and grumbling stomachs quiet.

Dillweed tea is believed to increase a nursing mother's breast milk as well as soothe her baby's colic. The root can be boiled and taken for colds, flu and coughs.  Because of its soothing qualities it's a good component in teas to induce sleep.


Grieve, A Modern Herbal (©1931)

Tierra, The Way of Herbs (©1980)



© Bobbi Mullins 2011, All rights reserved. FOOD FITNESS FAITH™