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Herbs and Spices - Latin Names

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Alexanders
   has the latin name   
Smyrnium Olusatrum
Similar to celery in look and taste. Was also once used as a medicinal herb.
Alkanet
   has the latin name   
Anchusa Arvensis
Used to give color to vegetable oils and wines. Commonly used as food colouring E103.
Allspice
   has the latin name   
Pimenta Dioica
The name "allspice" was coined as early as 1621 by the English, who thought it combined the flavour of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
Angelica
   has the latin name   
Angelica Archangelica
Accounts for the distinct flavor of many liqueurs such as Chartreuse.
Anise
   has the latin name   
Pimpinella Anisum
Sweet and very aromatic, distinguished by its licorice-like flavor.
Annatto
   has the latin name   
Bixa Orellana L.
It is used to color many cheeses (Cheddar and Brie) as well as margarine, butter and smoked fish.
Apple Mint
   has the latin name   
Mentha Suaveolens
Apple mint is also popular because it is "mind-soothing" and relaxing.
Asafoetida
   has the latin name   
Ferula Assafoetida
Also known as Devil's Dung, Stinking Gum and Food of the Gods. Reminiscent of leeks.
Basil
   has the latin name   
Ocimum Basilicum
Basil is originally native to Iran, India and other tropical regions of Asia, having been cultivated there for more than 5,000 years.
Bay Leaf
   has the latin name   
Laurus Nobilis
Bay leaves can also be used scattered in pantries to repel meal moths and roaches.
Bee Balm
   has the latin name   
Monarda Didyma
Bee Balm is the natural source of the antiseptic Thymol, the primary active ingredient in modern commercial mouthwash formulas.
Black Cardamom
   has the latin name   
Amomum Subulatum
Black cardamom pods can be used in soups, chowders, casseroles, and marinades for smoky flavor, much in the way bacon is used.
Black Mustard
   has the latin name   
Brassica Nigra
The seeds are commonly used in Indian cuisine such as curry.
Black Pepper
   has the latin name   
Piper Nigrum
Blue Fenugreek
   has the latin name   
Trigonella Caerulea
Fenugreek is widely used in lower-cost syrup products as a maple syrup flavoring such as Mapleine.
Borage
   has the latin name   
Borago Officinalis
Borage is sometimes indicated to alleviate and heal colds, bronchitis, and respiratory infections in general for its anti-inflammatory and balsamic properties.
Burdock
   has the latin name   
Arctium Lappa
Burdock achieved international recognition for its culinary use due to the increasing popularity of the macrobiotic diet.
Calamus
   has the latin name   
Acorus Calamus Americanus
Its oil was used in ancient Israel as an ingredient in anointing oil in the temple sacrifices.
Candle Nut
   has the latin name   
Aleurites Moluccanus
Candle nuts are also roasted and mixed into a paste with salt to form a Hawaiian condiment known as inamona
Capers
   has the latin name   
Capparis Spinosa
Capers are a distinctive ingredient in Italian cuisine, especially in Sicilian and southern Italian cooking.
Caraway
   has the latin name   
Carum Carvi
Rye bread is denser because the limonene from the caraway fruits has yeast-killing properties.
Cardamom
   has the latin name   
Elettaria Cardamomum
It also is used to break up kidney stones and gall stones, and was reportedly used as an antidote for both snake and scorpion venom bite.
Cassia
   has the latin name   
Cinnamomum Aromaticum
Most of the spice sold as cinnamon in the United States and Canada is actually cassia.
Cayenne Pepper
   has the latin name   
Capsicum Annuum
Capsaicin, potentially derived from Cayenne Pepper, is used in the production of pepper spray, as employed by police, military, and security personnel.
Chervil
   has the latin name   
Anthriscus Cerefolium
Sometimes referred to as "gourmet's parsley".
Chicory
   has the latin name   
Cichorium Intybus
Its use as a coffee additive is also very popular in India, parts of Southeast Asia and the American South, particularly in New Orleans.
Chives
   has the latin name   
Allium Schoenoprasum
Cicely
   has the latin name   
Myrrhis Odorata
Used to flavour Akvavit liquer.
Cinnamon
   has the latin name   
Cinnamomum Verum
Clove
   has the latin name   
Syzygium Aromaticu
Can be used as mosquito repellent, dental pain and fever reduction.
Coriander
   has the latin name   
Coriandrum Sativum
Used in the Belgian style of wheat beer called witbier.
Costmary
   has the latin name   
Tanacetum Balsamita
It was used in medieval times as a place marker in bibles.
Cowslip
   has the latin name   
Primula Veris
It is used medicinally as a diuretic, an expectorant, and an antispasmodic.
Cubeb Pepper
   has the latin name   
Piper Cubeba
Also called the 'Java pepper' having a taste between allspice and black pepper.
Cuban Oregano
   has the latin name   
Plectranthus Amboinicus
Used as a substitute for oregano in the food trade and food labelled 'oregano flavoured' may contain this herb.
Cumin
   has the latin name   
Cuminum Cyminum
Curry Leaf
   has the latin name   
Murraya Koenigii
Used as seasoning in South Indian and Sri Lankan cooking especially in curries with fish.
Dill Weed
   has the latin name   
Anethum Graveolens
Elecampane
   has the latin name   
Inula Helenium
In France and Switzerland it is used in the manufacturing of Absinthe.
Epazote
   has the latin name   
Chenopodium Ambrosioides
Used to flavor traditional Mexican dishes such as quesadillas, soups, mole de olla and enchiladas.
Fennel
   has the latin name   
Foeniculum Vulgare
Fenugreek
   has the latin name   
Trigonella Foenum-graecum
Frequently used in curry. Charred fenugreek seeds have been found in the tombof Tutankhamen.
Filé Powder
   has the latin name   
Sassafras Albidum
Dried and ground sassafras leaves. Used in 'Gumbo' a Creole and Cajun stew as a thickening agent.
French Sorrel
   has the latin name   
Rumex Scutatus
Used to be called butter dock because its large leaves were used to wrap and conserve butter.
Galangal
   has the latin name   
Alpinia Galanga
It is said to have the effect of an aphrodisiac and acts as a stimulant.
Ginger
   has the latin name   
Zingiber Officinale
Ginkgo Biloba
   has the latin name   
Ginkgo Biloba
Medically proven to have no affect on increased memory, it makes a soothing tea.
Golpar
   has the latin name   
Heracleum Persicum
Usually sprinkled over pomegranate seeds in Persian cooking.
Grains of Paradise
   has the latin name   
Aframomum Melegueta
It is used as a flavoring in beers (Samual Adams Summer Ale) and Norwegian aquavit.
Green Tea
   has the latin name   
Camellia Sinensis
Falsification of green tea is very common - it is only produced in China, Japan, Ceylon and India.
Ground Ivy
   has the latin name   
Glechoma Hederacea
Used in brewing beer as flavoring - known as Alehoof and Tunhoof.
Hops
   has the latin name   
Humulus Lupulus
Hops were intially condemend in 1519 as a 'wicked and pernicious weed'. In 1524 that opinion was reversed when hops were used in beer.
Horehound
   has the latin name   
Marrubium Vulgare
Horehound extract has long been used for throat lozenges and cough syrups.
Horseradish
   has the latin name   
Armoracia Rusticana
Horseradish is dyed green as a cheaper substitute for Wasabi.
Hyssop
   has the latin name   
Hyssopus Officinalis
Used as an ingredient in eau de Cologne and the liqueur Chartreuse.
Jasmine
   has the latin name   
Jasminum Spp
Juniper Berry
   has the latin name   
Juniperus Communis
Used in the manufacturer of the spirit Gin - first distilled as a appetite stimulant and remedy for arthritis.
Lady's Bedstraw
   has the latin name   
Galium Verum
Used to colour the cheese Double Gloucester and infusing the Danish spirit, Bjaesk.
Lemon Balm
   has the latin name   
Melissa Officinalis
Used as a flavouring in ice cream and herbal teas.
Lemon Basil
   has the latin name   
Ocimum × Citriodorum
Lemon basil is a popular herb in Lao, Indonesian, Malaysia, Thai, Arabian and Persian cuisine.
Lemongrass
   has the latin name   
Cymbopogon Citratus
Commonly used in teas, soups, and curries. It is also suitable for poultry, fish, and seafood.
Lemon Mint
   has the latin name   
Monarda Citriodora
Often used as a replacement for spearmint flavouring.
Lovage
   has the latin name   
Levisticum Officinale
Also called "Love Parsley" as it was often used in over-the-counter love tonics.
Luo Han Guo
   has the latin name   
Siraitia Grosvenorii
The fruit extract is 300 times sweeter than sugar and has been used as a natural sweetener in China for over 1000 years.
Mace
   has the latin name   
Myristica Fragrans
Mahlab
   has the latin name   
Prunus Mahaleb
Flavour is similar to a bitter almond and cherry. Used in Middle Eastern cake and pastry recipes.
Marjoram
   has the latin name   
Origanum Majorana
Mastic
   has the latin name   
Pistacia Lentiscus
Used in the flavouring of Mastichato and Mastica.
Mint
   has the latin name   
Mentha Spp
Mitsuba
   has the latin name   
Cryptotaenia Japonica
Used as a replacement for parsley.
Mugwort
   has the latin name   
Artemisia Vulgaris
Mugwort was used as part of a herbal mixture called gruit, used in the flavoring of beer before the widespread introduction of hops.
Nasturtium
   has the latin name   
Tropaeolum Majus
Unripe seed pods are picked with hot vinegar - used in place of capers.
Nutmeg
   has the latin name   
Myristica Fragrans
Oregano
   has the latin name   
Origanum Vulgare
Orris Root
   has the latin name   
Iris Germanica
The main flavouring ingredient in Bombay Sapphire gin.
Paprika
   has the latin name   
Capsicum Annuum
Parsley
   has the latin name   
Petroselinum Crispum
Peppermint
   has the latin name   
Mentha Piperata
Poppy Seed
   has the latin name   
Papaver Somniferum
Rosemary
   has the latin name   
Rosmarinus Officinalis
Rue
   has the latin name   
Ruta Graveolens
In Italy rue leaves are sometimes added to grappa to obtain 'grappa alla ruta'.
Safflower
   has the latin name   
Carthamus Tinctorius
Saffron
   has the latin name   
Crocus Sativus
Saffron is one of the three essential ingredients in the Spanish paella valenciana, and is responsible for its characteristic brilliant yellow colouring.
Sage
   has the latin name   
Salvia Officinalis
Salad Burnet
   has the latin name   
Sanguisorba Minor
A flavor described as "light cucumber" and is considered interchangeable with mint leaves in some recipes
Salep
   has the latin name   
Orchis Mascula
Ground salep leaves and root are referred to as 'Turkish Delight', a drink served in the Middle East to England in the 17th century.
Sassafras
   has the latin name   
Sassafras Albidum
Used in the flavoring of root beer until being banned by the FDA.
Savory
   has the latin name   
Satureja Hortensis
Sesame Seed
   has the latin name   
Sesamum Indicum
Sheep's Sorrel
   has the latin name   
Rumex Acetosella
Used as a tart flavouring agent and a curdling agent for cheese.
Sichuan Pepper
   has the latin name   
Xanthoxylum Piperitum
A key ingredient in the Sichuan dish 'Hot Pot' , which is spicy yet has a numbing affect to the mouth.
Sloe Berries
   has the latin name   
Prunus Spinosus
Fruit used for sloe gin, but also used to flavor Jägermeister.
Sorrel
   has the latin name   
Rumex Acetosa
The leaves are pureed in soups and sauces - a flavour similar to kiwifruit or wild strawberries.
Southernwood
   has the latin name   
Artemisia Abrotanum
The pungent, scented leaves and flowers are used in herbal teas.
Spearmint
   has the latin name   
Mentha Spicata
Spikenard
   has the latin name   
Nardostachys Grandiflora
An herb usually eaten during Shabbat (Hebrew).
Star Anise
   has the latin name   
Illicium Verum
Stevia
   has the latin name   
Stevia Rebaudiana
The leaves are widely used as a sweetener in Japan and in Canada.
Summer Savory
   has the latin name   
Satureja Hortensis
Used as a replacement for sage.
Sweet Cicely
   has the latin name   
Myrrhis Odorata
A strong taste reminiscent of anise. Used to flavour the liquer Akvavit.
Tamarind
   has the latin name   
Tamarindus Indica
An important ingredient in Chutney, Worcestershire sauce and HP sauce.
Tarragon
   has the latin name   
Artemisia Dracunculus
Thyme
   has the latin name   
Thymus Vulgaris
Tulsi
   has the latin name   
Ocimum Tenuiflorum
Also referred to as Thia Holy Basil.
Turmeric
   has the latin name   
Curcuma Longa
Vanilla
   has the latin name   
Vanilla Planifolia
Wintergreen
   has the latin name   
Gaultheria Procumbens
Woodruff
   has the latin name   
Galium Odoratum
Although used for pot-pourri, it is also used to flavour May Wine.
Wormwood
   has the latin name   
Artemisia Absinthium
It is an ingredient in the liquor absinthe, and also used for flavouring in some other spirits and wines, including bitters, vermouth and pelinkovac.
Ylang-ylang
   has the latin name   
Cananga Odorata
It is believed to relieve high blood pressure and is considered to be an aphrodisiac.
Zedoary
   has the latin name   
Curcuma Zedoaria
A fragrance reminiscent of mango, the flavour is similar to ginger. It is ground to a powder and added to curry pastes.


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