Fenugreek Fun Facts
Being one of the spices used by ancient Egyptians in their embalming ceremonies, prolonged ingestion of fenugreek is widely noted for its ability to change the odor of perspiration and urine to smell like maple syrup.
An ancient herb from Asia and Southern Europe, fenugreek leaves and seeds are loaded with vitamins and minerals. These are valuable for their use not only in foods, but also in traditional and modern medicine around the world.
One of fenugreek’s basic herbal uses is to stimulate milk production in breastfeeding women, as well as inducing childbirth, containing phytoestrogens or plant chemicals similar to the female sex hormone estrogen. Other uses include relieving digestive problems and menopausal symptoms, but lately it’s had a resurgence in interest as an aphrodisiac. Fenugreek is also used as a remedy applied to the skin to treat infections and inflammation.
Roasting and grinding of fenugreek seeds are advised before food use. Studies show it not only has the ability to lower blood sugar levels but fight cancer. Try grinding a few tablespoons into your next stir fry or soup. You might discover a new secret ingredient…
…Fenugreek is one of the oldest cultivated medicinal plants native to southern Europe and Asia. The name itself has an exotic ring, and it should, as widely traveled as it is. A very popular plant grown throughout Mediterranean regions, Argentina, North Africa, France, India, and the U.S., fenugreek is mentioned in detail in Egyptian papyrus writings circa 1500 B.C. Because it’s been used in so many cultures, this is one herb with a lot of different monikers: bird’s foot, Greek hay, and bockshornsame are a few.
An annual plant about two feet tall, this herb is also considered a legume. It produces light green leaves similar to clover, small white flowers, and long pods each containing 10 to 20 small, hard, golden-brown seeds. The seeds have a pungent aroma and fairly bitter taste, described as similar to burnt celery.
While it’s also known for dying textiles, fenugreek’s many food uses – not to mention curative aspects – indicate how versatile this plant and its derivatives can be. The tender leaves and shoots can be added to salad greens, and the extract is used for marinades as well as imitation vanilla, butterscotch, rum, and maple syrup flavoring.
Ground to a fine powder, fenugreek seeds are a favorite ingredient in Indian curries, but can add tasty pizzazz to any bland dish. Fenugreek seeds also make it onto the ingredient list in everything. They’re even roasted and ground to make coffee.
After purchasing, fenugreek can be stored in a cool, dry place for up to six months…
Finish reading: What Is Fenugreek Good For? – Mercola.com