6 May 2006

Herbs - Rosemary

Please visit my new tenant Life is Fresh. This gardening Blog has lots of interesting entries from growing herbs to how to make your lucky bamboo curly. I certainly will be taking a good look at this blog as being Vegan I use herbs for health, cooking and making my own beauty products.



Talking about herbs I would like to discuss Rosemary today being one of my favorite herbs. Usage of rosemary dates back to 500 b.c., when it was used as a culinary and medicinal herb by the ancient Greeks and Romans.

In The Kitchen

Rosemary give a wonderful taste and fragrance to roasted vegetables, especially potatoes.

Lentil, Garlic and Rosemary Soup from VeganFamily

A cleansing and fortifying soup for the winter, combining the immune boosting properties of garlic and rosemary with the nutritious content of the lentils and carrots (zinc, iron and carotenes) . This recipe makes a large pot of soup - will feed 6 people at 2 sittings or you could freeze half for later.

2 cups of red lentils
approx 9 or 10 cups of water
1 whole bulb of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
either a large sprig of fresh rosemary, finely chopped or two teaspoons of dried
4 medium carrots diced quite small
seasalt to taste

Place the lentils in a large saucepan and cover with the water - bring to the boil while preparing the other ingredients. Reduce to a simmer and add the garlic, rosemary and carrots. Cook for a further 20 minutes until everything is ready and add the salt.

Olive Rosemary Flatbread from VegetarianTimes

1 tablespoon active dry yeast or 1/4 ounce / 8 grams package yeast
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
7 tablespoons olive oil
3 cups bread flour, plus extra for kneading
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons coarse salt
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup finely chopped kalamata olives
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary

In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast over water and stir with fork to dissolve. Let stand 5 min. Whisk in 4 tablespoons olive oil.

In separate bowl, mix bread flour, whole wheat flour and 1 teaspoon salt. Add flour, one cup at a time, to yeast mixture, stirring well after each addition. When dough begins to come away from sides of bowl, turn out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead in garlic, olives and 1/2 teaspoon rosemary. Continue kneading, adding more flour as nec, until dough is shiny, elastic and no longer sticky, about 10 min.

Transfer dough to lightly oiled bowl and turn to coat all sides with oil. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside until dough triples in volume, about 2 hrs.

Punch down dough and place in a greased 13 x 9 inch (33 x 23 centimeter) baking sheet. Press and pat dough until it covers entire surface of pan. Cover with a towel and let rise until dough reaches top edge of sheet, about 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400F/205C. Just before baking, dimple dough with fingertips and drizzle surface with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon rosemary and remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Place on middle oven rack. Put an empty baking dish on lower rack. Quickly pour 1 cup boiling water into empty dish and close door. Bake until bread is well risen and golden 20 - 25 min. Remove bread from pan to wire rack. Brush surface with remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Cut into squares and serve warm.

Makes 16 servings

Health and Beauty

Warning: Avoid rosemary if pregnant, have high blood pressure or epilepsy.

Applied to the skin, rosemary essential oil helps strengthen the capillaries and has a rejuvenating effect. For this reason, rosemary is a common ingredient used in many cosmetics, including skin toners, creams, soaps and hair products.

Rosemary contains chemicals called quinones, which have been shown in laboratory studies to inhibit carcinogens. Thus, this herb is ranked high on the list of cancer-prevention and reduction foods.

Rosemary Tea: Put a few sprigs in a cup and pour over boiling, leave for a few minutes and drink the tea. It improves circulation, stimulates the liver, eases joint pain and headache pain and relieves cold symptoms

Bathe away stress, strain, and fatigue with a soak in a bath with a few drops of rosemary oil or a few sprigs of rosemary - so invigorating, it wakes up the system.

Rosemary Foot Bath for tired feet: In a foot bath place warm water with 2 drops of rosemary oil, 2 drops of camomile oil and 3 teaspoons of cider vinegar. Relax and soak feet for 15 minutes.

Anti-dandruff conditioner : 5 teaspoons extra virging olive oil, 2 teaspoons of rosemary oil, 2 drops camomile oil, 1 drop of lavender oil and a 2 capsules of vitamin E oil. Massage into hair and scalp, cover head with a towel and leave on for an hour. Shampoo hair.


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