Parsley (Petrolselinum crispum)

How about that parsley on the side of your plate?

Often under appreciated but pretty as green garnish, parsley is an essential herb to have handy.The ancient Greeks knew its value and made crowns to honor themselves at special events.  It sweetens the breath, enhances salads, makes a tasty topping for potatoes, can be chopped and added to salad, vegetable dressings, or in butter and also yummy in egg dishes.

Parsley is full of vitamins and freshens the breath!

Parsley is full of vitamins and freshens the breath!

The mossy or curly-leaved parsley beautifies the garden and requires adequate water and fertile soil to thrive. Buy plenty when you find it at your farmers’ market, clean it thoroughly and chop it up to freeze for a few weeks at a time. It’s not as good as having fresh parsley but you’ll have it whenever you need it. Especially to add color atop your special soup or grilled cheese sandwich.

The celery-leaved parsley, also called Italian or flat-leaved parsley, enhances soups and stews. According to the late but not forgotten herbalist, Adele Dawson, parsley is in a family of herbs which includes dill, fennel and anise. Try planting curly-leaved parsley from seed in containers on the patio or in a sunny window. Enjoy it as a snack to freshen your mouth and get your greens! According to The Cambridge World History of Food, fresh parsley is a source of calcium, iron, and vitamins A and C.

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