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Also Known as
Shepu, Suva bhaji
Dill has a bouquet that is aromatic and somewhat sweet. It is not a "hot" herb, like red chili peppers; rather, dill provides a delicate taste sensation. The dill plant grows to a height of 8-30 inches. The leaves are feathery and fernlike. The plant is a dark sea green color, with yellow flowers. The light brown seeds are about 3.5 mm (0.15 in) long, with a winged and oval shape. One side of the seed is flat, with two ridges; the other side, is convex with three ridges and three oil channels. The leaves, flowers, and oval flat seeds of the dill plant are all edible. The plant has thin, feathery green leaves, of which only about the top eight inches are used.
Dill is one of those herbs that in effect have two different seasons. In early spring it is used for its leaves and then later in fall for its seeds. Each part of the plant has its own characteristics and properties. One of them is Dill seeds.
Chopped dill leaves
Wash the dill leaves thoroughly or soak in water containing a pinch of salt to remove all the dirt. Chop coarsely or finely as the recipie desires, squeeze out the excess water and then use.
How to Select
Providing a tangy addition to pickles, salad dressing fresh dill is available at markets during the summer and early fall while dried dill is available throughout the year. At the market: Dill is sold as fresh cuttings (sprigs) bundled into convenient amounts, in sprinkle-pour bottles of dill weed (dried leaves), and in sprinkle-pour bottles of dill seeds.
· Dill has a simple, clean taste. When using dill leaves, it is best to use it fresh rather than dried to get the most flavors. The flavor of dill weed diminishes greatly the longer it is cooked. Add it at the last minute for full flavor and aroma.
· Quick dill butter: Add 1/4 cup minced fresh dill weed to 1/2 cup softened butter. This goes delectable with all kinds of breads.
· Combine dill weed with plain yogurt and chopped cucumber for a delicious cooling dip. Use dill weed as a garnish for sandwiches.
· Fresh and dried dill leaves are used as herbs.
· This fernlike leaves are aromatic, and are used to flavor many foods -soups, and pickles.
· The crisp grassy taste makes a good vegetable and is paired with Bajra or Jowar roti.
· Cucumbers are another food that partners well with dill, either in salads, chilled soups or on tea sandwiches.
How to Store
Fresh dill should always be stored in the refrigerator either wrapped in a damp paper towel or with its stems placed in a container of water. Since it is very fragile, even if stored properly, dill will only keep fresh for about two days. Dill can be frozen, either whole or chopped, in airtight containers. Alternatively, you can freeze the dill leaves in ice cube trays covered with water or stock that can be added when preparing soups or stews.
· Dill is also very rich in minerals, vitamin C and flavonoids.
· Protection Against Free Radicals and Carcinogens.
· An Anti-Bacterial Spice.
· A Flavorful Way to Help Prevent Bone Loss.
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