Can a commonly grown herb serve as a salt substitute? Lovage is a unique herb known for its strength, usefulness and sturdiness, and is equally at home in the garden or on the dinner table.
According to Old Fashioned Living.Com, lovage is a large, hearty herb that can grow to more than 6 feet in size. This herb makes an impressive addition to any garden, and can serve your family in a variety of ways.
What to look for:
Lovage is a tall, thick plant with a fleshy root. This fertile herb spouts both lovely gold flowers and strong scented fruits. It is lushly ornamental and carries a pleasant scent, and can provide both beauty and variety to any garden.
How Mother Nature loves it:
When growing lovage, nurture the herb in partial shade and fertile soil. Seed the plant outside during a longer growing season, and be sure to apply a lot of attentive, tender loving care; keep the herb well-watered, especially during the first weeks of its growth, and nurture it with a natural fertilizer.
How to use it:
Lovage is a rare herb that is fully and totally edible; every part can be utilized for some culinary purpose. In the kitchen, lovage is perhaps most popular as a healthy salt substitute, says Old Fashioned Living.Com. You can use it to flavor soups and stews, and as a strong-tasting ingredient in tomato and potato dishes. Sweet-tasting lovage seeds, by contrast, are comparable to celery seeds and can make a tasty addition to many recipes. Lovage has nutritional value when fresh or frozen, whole or ground, and adds an extra flavor to chicken soup, chilled tomato soups, meatloaf, cakes, meats, biscuits, breads, sauces, cheeses, salad dressings, coleslaw, and pickles. And it makes for a lovely, very flavorful herbal tea.
Lovage also comes complete with a full range of medicinal purposes. Known as a drug plant in the 14th century, according to Botanical.Com, lovage has been known to treat stomach disorders, the effects of fever, and—for children in particular—colic and flatulence. A sound emmenagogue, its root also can be infused to treat jaundice, pleurisy and urinary troubles; moreover, its roots and seeds can be utilized to treat ‘pestilential disorders.’ The herb is stimulating and is an active ingredient in many household medicines and expectorants.
Whether as a culinary ingredient or a medicinal herb, or merely as a source of bragging rights for the avid gardener (who can say “I grew an herb THIS BIG”), lovage is a most loveable herb and a vital part of any garden, pantry or medicine cabinet.