Fennel is one of those herbs that has so many uses, plus ~ bonus ~ it's even a lovely, visually appealing addition to your herb garden.
Originally from the Mediterranean area, it's popularity over the centuries has brought it all over the world and it can been grown anywhere the summer sun shines down a goodly amount of heat. So, depending upon where you are, most likely you can grow it in your garden. I will be adding some to mine this year, as it's been a while since I've had it.
The sprigs (leaves) and stems are a yummy addition to your salad and, if you buy any of the pre-mixed bags of salad, you've probably already had it. If you like sauces with your fish or chicken, sprinkling in some of the fine, little fennel sprigs will make a great addition to your sauce. Fennel is also a nice mild addition for your herb bread.
Fennel seeds have a licorice taste and munching on just a few of the whole seeds is a great breath freshener. They also help with after meal bloat, reflux and stomach acid.
Using the seeds as a medicinal tea is good for SO MANY things:
- curbs appetite while dieting
- light detox and diuretic
- calms bloating
- calms stomach acid and reflux
- opens blocked sinuses
- cools the liver, helps with alcohol damage
- relieves pain from gout and arthritis
- regulates menstrual cycles
- greatly improves milk production in nursing mothers
- migraine headaches
- saturate a cotton ball in a strong tea and apply to insect bites and scratches to take away the itch and pain
If your dog has fleas, 1) sprinkle just a few sprigs into your dog's food and 2) pick off a small bunch of fennel from your garden, give the sprigs a few light squeezes ~ enough to get just a little juicy ~ and rub into the fur on your dog's back. Even if he licks it, it won't hurt him (they kinda like it) but the fleas will hate it. :-)
Don't like your freckles? Warm up a TB of honey, add 1/2 ts of crushed fennel seed, mix well. Apply to your face, leave on for about 15-20 minutes and wash off with warm water. Do this about twice a week.
So much from such an over-looked herb ~ attractive in the garden and all of it's parts are useful.
Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><