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12 JANUARY 2020

Greek Loose Herbs...

 

 
A handful of mint for aromatic ‘keftedakia’ (meatballs), a pinch of spearmint for the Mojito, a little mountain tea for the common cold, a cup of chamomile to relax before turning in. And the list goes on... This is because in Greece, our connection with herbs and aromatic plants is deep and goes back a long way. 




For colds, stomach upsets or sore throats, rheumatic complaints and even mental alertness, we put our trust in nature’s pharmacy and practices, which, handed down from one generation to the next, are applied for their therapeutic and countless other properties, long since recognised by medical research. 



We are indeed lucky to live in a country so rich in pharmaceutical and aromatic plants, hundreds of which are endemic, where the soil, climate and geographical position allows them to thrive.  



 

Herbs at Tearoute:

 
At Tearoute, quality is king. We select suppliers from all over Greece who respect the environment, the soil and the consumer. We select herbs that have been carefully grown and stand out for their freshness, aroma, flavour and are certified as organically farmed.
Thus our mint, lemon verbena and mountain tea, amongst others, are cultivated, gathered and processed by the experienced hands of our suppliers on the Karditsa plains. 


Peppermint, Mentha piperita, organic


With its distinct aroma and important medicinal attributes, mint, a particularly beloved herb in antiquity, invigorates the mind and mood, and also features strongly in cooking, medicine and cosmetics.

Due to the essential oil of menthol to be found in its leaves and stems, mint helps as an expectorant, soothing coughs and relieving sore throats, nausea and colds. It also reduces muscle aches and pains, and brings relief to period pains. In many countries it is served as a cordial after meals to help with digestion, while settling the stomach and refreshing the breath.


 

Lemon verbena, Lippia citriodora, organic


Lemon verbena is characterised by a subtle lemony aroma and its many beneficial properties. The cordial from lemon verbena has an intense diuretic effect, which aids digestion, removes superfluous liquids and actively contributes to burning fat, stretching the skin and combating cellulite. Furthermore, it is an excellent natural sedative which reduces anxiety and insomnia, while also relieving all kinds of aches and pains.
 




 

Chamomile, Matriciana Chamomilla


Universally hailed, chamomile is deeply rooted in Greek tradition and known for its curative powers since antiquity. Chamomile is an aromatic plant of refined appearance with a subtle, sweet fragrance, which fully deserves its place in our larder.

Conventionally, we drink chamomile to relax before going to bed. However, just as important is its sedative effect for conditions related to the nerves, such as migraines and neuralgia. It also brings relief to stomach upsets and period pains. Traditionally, it has been used to 'settle' newborns and toddlers in the teething phase, as well as for mild skin conditions.


 

Spearmint, Mentha spicata


Legend has it that spearmint took its name from the nymph Minthe, who was transformed into said plant by Persephone, when she was caught Minthe in the arms of her husband, Hades. This is a plant with great medicinal worth and an unbeatable aroma. Spearmint is used in cooking, the pharmaceutical industry and in perfumes.

Included among its most important properties are its contribution to fighting stomach upsets, such as dyspepsia, nausea and diarrhoea, its anticonvulsant action, and its effectiveness in soothing arthritic and rheumatic pain. Apart from that, there are also indications that spearmint sharpens the memory and has a beneficial effect on the nervous system. There is also no doubt that its revitalising aroma improves one's mood and combats halitosis.

 

Greek Mountain Tea, Sideritis, organic 


Growing wild in the upland regions of Greece, Mountain Tea is one of the most recognisable and well-loved herbs in the land, internationally known as 'Greek Mountain Tea'.

Traditionally, it is thought to stimulate the body, and is drunk mostly in the winter, since it shields the respiratory system and fights off colds. It also combats hypertension and appears to prevent the onset of osteoporosis.  Very encouragingly, results from medical research have shown that Mountain Tea greatly contributes to combating Alzheimer's disease.




 

Recipe: 

 

Butter flavoured with dried herbs





A simple and quick recipe that we can use to accompany our bread, but also to flavour meat, fish, creamy soups, boiled vegetables as well and anywhere else our fancy takes us. 
This recipe is given for butter flavoured with sage, but we could alternatively use mountain tea, spearmint, dittany, mint separately or together, adjusting the amount and mixture according to preference.

Ingredients
250 gr of unsalted butter at room temperature
1,5 tsp. salt flakes
1-1,5 tbsp. finely chopped leaves of sage
greaseproof paper

Execution
Put the butter in a bowl and melt it with a fork.
First add the salt flakes and then the chopped leaves of the sage and stir them in with a fork until the ingredients are mixed together.
Place the butter on greaseproof paper, which we then wrap up in a roll and leave in the fridge for an hour to cool.
Cut into rings and serve. 
 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=le_59VvB1Dc&t=3s
 
 

 

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