Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 09:02 pm
Even if the name suggests it, the curry herb has almost nothing to do with the spice of the same name. Only its scent is reminiscent of the popular spice mixture. The scent is particularly strong in warmth and / or moisture.
Curry herb in the kitchen
Curry herb (bot. Helichrysum italicum), which is quite easy to care for, can be used in many ways in the kitchen, similar to the well-known curry powder. However, the herb should always be removed from the finished dish after cooking, otherwise it can cause stomach problems. However, it is not poisonous.
Unfortunately, curry herb is not hardy. Although it can be well dried and then used for seasoning, but the taste of the fresh herb is much more intense. If you can, be sure to overwinter the evergreen curry herb frost-free. This will allow you to harvest fresh throughout the year.
Curry herb in medicine
In medicine, the essential oils of curry herb are considered anti-inflammatory and antibacterial. They are used, for example, against coughs and other colds. Helichrysum is also used in homeopathy.
Curry herb in the home
You can also use freshly harvested branches of curry herb to drive away insects or to improve the air. The herb gives off a pleasant oriental scent. Hang a bouquet of curry herb in your bedroom to ward off mosquitoes.
Curry herb is also very suitable for use in dry bouquets. It is best to take flowering branches for this purpose. The yellow flowers are extremely decorative in combination with the silvery foliage. For a long shelf life, dry the branches hanging.
Harvesting curry herb
Ideally, you harvest your curry herb shortly before flowering. Then the aroma is particularly intense. Always cut off entire shoots just above the transition from the woody to the soft part of the branch. This allows the herb to sprout anew.
Preserving and storing curry herb
If you would like to use curry herb all year round, but have no space in your home, you can also dry, pickle or freeze the herb. However, a lot of flavor is lost when it is dried. It is best preserved when pickling in good olive oil.
The most important things in a nutshell:
- can be used fresh or dried
- tastes best fresh
- excellent seasoning for meat dishes and stews
- Use similar to curry powder
- remove herb from food before consumption, otherwise it can cause stomach problems
- essential oil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects
- fresh twigs keep insects away
Curry herb is excellent as a seasoning for various dishes. For year-round use, it can be easily dried or frozen.