Monday, November 1, 2010

Parsley {Herbs for Health and Hunger}

  Parsley is one of those herbs that are always nice to have on hand. I like it in my potato salad, on my seasoned potatoes and oven roasted chicken and much more!

I recently tried a new recipe that we all enjoyed that used Parsley. It was Parsley Fried Onion Rings. This is one of those once and a while treats as you have to deep fat fry it, but it did taste good. :-)

Here is the recipe:
Parsley Fried Onion Rings
3/4 cup Milk
2/3 cup flour
2 T. Apple Cider Vinegar
3/4 cup chopped Parsley
3/4 t. salt
1 Large onion (or possibly more)
Oil for frying them in.

In bowl, whisk milk, vinegar, salt and flour together. Whisk in Parsley. Cut onion crosswise into 1/2 inch thick slices. Take apart the rings. Heat oil to 380 degrees. Dip rings in batter and then fry 1 to 2 minutes. Watch them closely, turn if necessary and just let them get nice golden brown. Drain on paper towels and enjoy right away!

Parsley is another one of the herbs that I have found very easy to grow. It does take a while for the seed to germinate (up to 6 weeks) but it grows well. I soak my seeds in some water before planting them to give them a little head start. Parsley grows best in moist, sandy, well drained loam with a neutral pH. The herbs usually survive one or two frosts. If I remember right I have even dug some out from under snow once and it still was good.

Another way we used Parsley this year was to make "Winter Pesto". I told a friend how I was enjoying Pesto but that I had run out of Basil and she said she had a recipe for "Winter Pesto" where instead of fresh basil you use fresh parsley as well as a tablespoon of dried Basil. I tried it. I didn't like it as well as the Basil pesto (and the fault may have been that my dried basil was old and not very strong) but it was still good.

Basil has quite a few uses for healing too. Here is what I have found:

  • Parsley's diuretic action can help control high blood pressure. In Germany they often prescribe Parsley seed tea for high blood pressure. The seed has a higher concentration of oil than the leaves and root.
  • Breath freshener. Parsley contains one of the highest levels of chlorophyll of herbs. Chlorophyll is an active ingredient in breath freshener. Eat a sprig or two after your meal. That is why nice restaurants garnish with parsley.
  • Parsley can be helpful to ease bloating during PMS, bring on a period or stimulate contractions during labor.It can also help tone uterine muscles after birth. For these reasons pregnant women should stick to only culinary amounts of parsley.
  • Parsley may help those with hay fever or hives.
  • Parsley contains psoralen which shows promise in the treatment of T-cell lymphoma. Obviously you shouldn't expect Parsley to cure the cancer but it would hurt to add it to what you are already doing. This is especially interesting to me as my Dad had Lymphoma years ago. (Though I don't know that it was T-cell)
  • Parsley is said to relieve rheumatism.
  • Parsley aids digestion.
  • Leaf infusions are a tonic for hair, skin and eyes. (I think they mean for you to drink the infusion but I wonder if making a hair rinse with parsley would be helpful.)
  • Leaf poultices soothe sprains and cuts.
Words of caution:
  • This is a diuretic so if you are using it a lot be sure to eat foods high in potassium such as bananas and fresh veggies.
  • Pregnant and nursing women should only use this in culinary amounts.
  • Medicinal doses of parsley should not be given to those under 2 years old.
  • Remember I am only sharing what I have read or used I am not a health care professional so use at your own discretion.
I didn't get as many posts put up on herbs as I had hoped. There are so many neat herbs! I hope to have another herb week sometime in the not to distant future so if you are interested in herbs stay tuned.

What are your experiences with Parsley? Do you have a favorite way to use it?

This post is part of the Home Remedies Carnival at Keeper of the Home.

1 comment:

Anna said...

Your onion ring recipe sounds yummy. We ate at Culvers with the Verhoevens when we returned from FPYC last Sunday and I had onion rings. They were so good and I had to share with most of my kids!
I think using sunflowers in pesto is a good idea. I have always replaced pinenuts with pecans because my recipe said that was acceptable. I think Sunflower is better for you and cheaper.


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