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THESE fabulous leafy plants HAVE BEEN USED throughout the world for CENTURIES in food, medicine & perfumE. There are thousands, of VARIETIES THAT CAN transform
a simple dish and elevate it into something truly spectacular.

MINT

With its uplifting sweetness, mint offers boundless opportunities. Used to soothe and enhance, mint has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s a friend to your brain too – helping increase concentration and easing headaches.  Mint is a fantastic all-rounder and delicious with raspberries!

Mint has been found in Egyptian tombs dating back to 1000BC and the Japanese have been using mint oil for 2000 years!

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PARSLEY

Not just a pretty garnish, parsley has much more to offer. Grown throughout the world for centuries, the Romans used parsley in great quantities to counter strong smells!  Containing high levels of Vitamin C, iron and chlorophyll (an antiseptic), it fixes wounds and bites. We celebrate parsley as the star of the show.

Parsley seeds can be used to kill head lice!  Make a tea from crushed seeds and pour over the head after washing.  Bingo!

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Tarragon

Native to southern Europe, Tarragon’s aniseed flavour was first introduced to Britain during the Tudor period.  Combine with parsley, chives and chervil to create a classic ‘fines herbes’. One for the first aid kit to treat snake bites, a tarragon tea also alleviates insomnia and constipation

Henry VIII was said to have divorced Catherine of Aragon because of her excessive use of Tarragon!

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Thyme

Grown around the world, Thyme has strong antiseptic properties; it can be used as a mouthwash for sore throats and gum infections.  Great in massage oils, it can also kill mosquito larva! An essential ingredient in bouquet garni, Thyme infuses beautifully into stocks, stews and casseroles.

In the Middle Ages a Thyme brew was drunk as part of a ritual to enable one to see fairies!

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SAGE

There’s no mistaking the strong evergreen scent of soft and supple sage, that quintessential ingredient to your Sunday roast stuffing. This herb has a long history for healing, supposedly curing everything from snake bites and eye problems to epilepsy and intoxication. It has even been prescribed as an aphrodisiac!

It was believed that sage stimulated the brain, therefore, increasing powers of concentration, memory and reasoning. From this, the word “sage” took on another meaning – wise person!

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OREGANO

Oregano comes from the Greek word meaning “mountain joy” and was revered as a symbol of happiness by the ancient Greeks and Romans. It has long been known for its powerful anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and antifungal effects. The ancient Greeks used it to treat sores and aching muscles. As an herb, oregano’s robust scent and flavour is much at home in Mediterranean cuisine. You’ll often find it used in its dried form, sprinkled on pizzas or added to Greek Salads, thought we prefer to use the fresh version in our sauces!

According to Greek Mythology, Aristotle reported that tortoises, after swallowing a snake, would immediately eat oregano to prevent death giving rise to the belief that oregano was an antidote to poison!

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ROSEMARY

Rosemary is a hardy evergreen herb popular in Mediterranean cuisine. Since ancient times it has been hailed for its medicinal properties with effectiveness for treating muscle pain, boosting the immune system, and improving memory. Even as recently as 2017, sales of rosemary oil skyrocketed amongst students because of its perceived memory benefit.

In the Middle Ages, rosemary was associated with wedding ceremonies. The bride would wear a rosemary headpiece and the groom and wedding guests would all wear a sprig of rosemary. An herbaceous love charm!

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BASIL

Fresh fragrant Basil is often called “king of the herbs” for its ubiquitous usage across numerous cuisines. Though often most commonly associated with Italian food, it is likely that Basil originated in India. There are 35 varieties of basil – sweet basil is the most common variety used in cooking, while holy basil is richest in essential oils and has been used for thousands of years in Ayurveda.

Symbolism around basil varies across the globe. In Portugal, dwarf bush basil is treated as a symbol of love. However, basil represented hatred in ancient Greece, and European lore sometimes claims that basil is a symbol of Satan!

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