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Information for Dill

Native to western Africa, southern Russia and the Mediterranean, dill can either be an annual or perennial herb. It is the only species of the Anethum genus and grows to be 16" to 24" (40 to 60 cm) in height. Composed of fine slender stems and firm wispy leaves, these have yellow to white flowers which grow in umbels.

This bears flat, long, oblong fruits, which are edible and used in cooking as dill seed once dried. The wild weed-like growth of this herb has given way to the name dill weed which is used for the fresh herb.

Dill leaves have a mild and sweet flavor and a pleasant aroma that is similar to that of anise. It is most popularly used as part of seasoning for pickles, cured salmon and soups. Many ingredients mix well with this herb. Bread, fish, veal, cream sauces, sea foods and vegetables are only some examples of foods that go well with dill.

When used as a spice, it is employed in a similar manner to caraway seed. Since its flavor becomes destroyed with heat from cooking, it is often added at the end of cooking. It may also be included in dishes that do not require cooking.

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