Anybody ready for dill pickles? This herb adds just the right amount of “oomph” to any pickle or fish sauce recipe.
Dill grows to about 3 feet tall and just about anywhere as long as it has enough sunlight. In the Middle Ages dill was hung by the front door to ward off witches. If you chew dill, it will alleviate bad breath and it has been known to cure hiccups.
Dill comes from the English word “dilla” which means to lull. It was also used to sooth colic in babies and stomach pains. It was also a very popular tea.
Dill is a member of the parsley family. It’s sometimes mistaken for fennel because of its feathery, light green leaves. However, it’s a totally different taste, so be careful – if you’re not sure what’s what, ask the farmer.
The whole plant is edible. It takes over 10,000 dill seeds to make an ounce – those are some tiny seeds. Used to make dill pickles, the average American will eat 8.5 lbs. of pickles a year. Dill pickles are three times more popular than sweet pickles.
One teaspoon of dill is about 3 calories. Dill contains Vitamin A and traces of Vitamin C. and also has a trace of calcium, fiber, magnesium and iron.
How to Select: You will find whole dill at the farmers market with the leaves, seeds and stalk still connected. Once picked, dill wilts quickly, but that does not affect the taste. The color of the leaves will be shades of yellow to light green. Dried or fresh, there is really no distinction in taste.
How To Store: It will last up to a week in the crisper of the fridge. Or you can trim the stems, place in a glass of water and place a plastic bag over the top, before placing dill in the refrigerator. As I mentioned, if the dill becomes wilted it will not affect the taste. You can store dill in the freeze for up to two months, but it will discolor.