Dill is a herb with wispy, fern-like leaves that have a soft, sweet taste. Both the leaves and the seeds are used in seasoning food. The seeds are light brown with an oval shape. They have a similar taste to caraway seeds – aromatic, sweet and slightly bitter.
Dill has traditionally been used to add a tangy flavour to pickles (gherkins), salad dressing and fish dishes and medicinally to soothe upset tummies and to relieve insomnia.
Introduction: 6 months
Choose fresh dill whenever possible as it has a far better flavour.
If you buy dried dill, make sure it is organic to ensure that it has not been irradiated.
The leaves of fresh dill should look feathery and green in colour. Dill leaves that are a little wilted are still acceptable since they usually droop very quickly after being picked.
Store fresh dill, unwashed in a sealed container/plastic bag in the refrigerator for 4-10 days.
Store fresh dill, chopped in ice-cube trays and covered with olive oil, water or stock in the freezer for 4 months.
Add a cube to purées, stews or soups.
Store dried dill in a sealed glass container in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months.
Soak the dill in a salt-, vinegar-, or hydrogen peroxide water solution for 20 minutes then rinse under running water.
Dill leaves can be added to purées, soups, pickles, scrambled eggs to name but a few.
As with other herbs, you can make a medicinal tea from the leaves – place fresh dill into boiling water, steep for at least 5 minutes, strain, and sip throughout the day. The Ancient Egyptians used this for: calming colicky babies, calming the nerves, and soothing upset stomachs.
Dill is an GOOD source of: vitamin A (in the form of pro-vitamin A carotenoid phytonutrients) and other healing components (monoterpenes and flavonoids).
Additionally dill is a source of vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, folate and iron.