Thyme

Thyme Thyme Thyme

General Description

Thyme is an herb. The flowers, leaves, and oil are used as medicine. Thyme is sometimes used in combination with other herbs. Thyme is taken by mouth for bronchitis, whooping cough, sore throat, colic, arthritis, upset stomach, stomach pain (gastritis), diarrhea, bedwetting, a movement disorder in children (dyspraxia), intestinal gas (flatulence), parasitic worm infections, and skin disorders. It is also used to increase urine flow (as a diuretic), to disinfect the urine, and as an appetite stimulant.

Some people apply thyme directly to the skin to act as a counterirritant, for hoarseness (laryngitis), swollen tonsils (tonsillitis), sore mouth, and bad breath. Thyme oil is used as a germ-killer in mouthwashes and liniments. It is also applied to the scalp to treat baldness and to the ears to fight bacterial and fungal infections. Thymol, one of the chemicals in thyme, is used with another chemical, chlorhexidine, as a dental varnish to prevent tooth decay. In foods, thyme is used as a flavoring agent. In manufacturing, red thyme oil is used in perfumes. It is also used in soaps, cosmetics, and toothpastes

Thyme is a delicate herb in appearance. Its tiny rounded leaves grow in clusters around its thinly wooded stems. The leaves measure a mere one-eighth inch in diameter. Younger leaves are bright green and fade to grey-green with age. Thyme's flavor counters its appearance with bold nuances of its essential oil, thymol. Its delivers layers of woodsy, savory and mint flavors. Thyme retains its flavor better than most herbs when dried, but fresh thyme is still preferred.

Seasons/Availability

Thyme is available year-round.

Current Facts

Thyme is an aromatic and widely used culinary herb that also happens to be the main ingredient in bouquet garni and one of the principle ingredients in Herbs de Provence. Thyme thrives as a garden herb as it is a natural insect repellent. Only honey bees are attracted to its productive flowers. Beehives near thyme sources produce savory honey.

Applications

Thyme is used to season stocks, stews and soups. Thyme can be used as a stand alone herb or in savory combinations. Use to flavor marinades with sea salt, rosemary, lemon zest and olive oil. Thyme pairs well with seafood, red meat and poultry. Thyme releases its flavors slowly so it is favored in slow and long cooking application. Add to root vegetables and autumn fruits, or infuse in syrups and oils. To store, keep cool and dry until ready to use.

Ethnic/Cultural Info

Thyme is perhaps the single most used herb as an essential ingredient in cuisines across the globe, ranging from the Caribbean, Europe, North America, South and Central America the Mediterranean and beyond.

Geography/History

Thyme is a perennial herb and member of the mint family, Labiatae. There are more than 100 species of thyme. Common garden thyme is the most widely used for culinary purposes. It is native to arid mountain regions of the Mediterranean and thus can tolerate drought conditions, which actually intensifies its flavor concentration. It grows wild in the hills of Greece and other western Mediterranean countries. Thyme is often grown with other savory herbs to be harvested together, specifically lavender, rosemary and savory.

Thyme Thyme Thyme

【LK94007691: Thyme. Text by Lakpura™. Images by Google, copyright(s) reserved by original authors.】