Since little, I used to spend my weekends at my grandparents’ house. I learned so much from them, many of the experiences I will be sharing with you are part of the education my family gave me.
When it comes to cooking every family has own traditions and habits, but it’s commonly known, how much we, the Italians, love to eat and spend time eating with our beloveds.
There is one task that I had since very little, picking up herbs in the garden. My grandmother on Sundays would start cooking earlier than the other days and would always ask me to go pick-up some herbs. One of the aromas I miss the most, now that I live far from home, is how powerful the fragrance of the herbs is when they are picked-up directly from the plant.
Sage, Laurel and Rosemary, are the ones we tend to use the most. The Italian cuisine is known for the use of these three herbs. Today I want to share with you some information about my favourite one: Rosemary. I will start by illustrating some interesting facts about this plant and in the following post; I’ll share a tasty recipe that exalt the taste of the rosemary.
PLENTY OF HISTORY
One of the most knowns legends is related to the name of the Virgin Mary. The legend says that Mary, during The Exodus from Egypt, left her blue cloak to dry on a plant of rosemary, the flowers that where actually white became of the beautiful colour we know them today.
The origins of the rosemary in the cuisine are actually originated before. It was the Greek doctor Galeno of Pergamo that introduced the digestive properties of this plant, establishing the extreme success in cooking of the rosemary.
For a long time the plant of rosemary had a strict relation to the memories. The Greeks used to wear rosemary necklace that were supposed to help increase their memory capacities. In ancient times, they used the rosemary to adorn the tombs in memory of the lost ones. Even Shakespeare in the Hamlet indicates the rosemary as the flower of the memories: “There’s rosemary, that’s for remembrance. Pray you, love, remember.” (Ophelia, act. IV, sc. V)
Many interesting legends are connected to the rosemary plant.
The rosemary a part for it’s beautiful smell has a lot of properties and uses. Principally it has antioxidant properties, is good to depurate the liver and it’s an energizing. It’s used in the aromatherapy as an antiseptic and antibacterial and is good to relive muscle pain. The essential oil extracted from the rosemary must be used with caution; elevated doses can irritate the stomach and intestine. Moreover, the rosemary is a good source of calcium and iron.
The rosemary is not only a good condiment but is a wonderful plant full of history and properties.Stay tuned to learn about my favourite recipe that enhance the taste of this amazing plant.