Dill Seed Profile
Also known as
Anethum graveolens, American Dill, Anethum Sowa, Anethi Herba, Dill Herb, Dill Oil, Dill Weed, Dillweed, Dilly, European Dill, Madhura, Peucedanum Graveolens, Satahva, Sotapa, Sowa.
The Vikings cultivated a plant they called "dilla," or "soothing," as a remedy for colic in babies. The easy-to-grow dill weed has become an essential ingredient in cuisines around the world. "Dill seed" actually isn't seed but the flat, oval, dark brown whole fruits of the herb. The term "dill weed" refers to the green leaves (and sometimes stems) of the plant. Dill seed and dill weed have different chemical compositions, different uses in cooking, and different applications in herbal healing. If you want to grow dill in your garden, plan for success. The mature plant produces thousands of seeds, most dill seeds germinate, and the plant can invade other growing beds. Dill likes a moist, well-drained soil in full sun, although it grows on most kinds of soils. Stress on the plant by heat or drought improves its flavor. If you let dill come up on its own, it will mature and go to seed before you have cucumbers. If you want to use dill in pickling, plant dill and cucumbers at the same time.
Dill seed and dill weed have different components in their essential oil. The distinctive aroma of dill seed is due to carvone (up to 60%) and limonene (up to 40%). Dill seed does not contain the phellandrene and other monoterpenes found in the leaf. Apiole is found in Indian dill seed but not in the species of the herb used in North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.
The "seeds" or fruit of the plant, used whole.
Added to cooking or pickling. May be taken as a capsule or extract.
The August 2005 edition of the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry confirmed the usefulness of dill seed and weed in stopping growth of various bacteria, yeast, and molds.
If you are using an Indian cookbook, try making the dish with half as much dill as the recipe calls for, unless the cookbook was written specifically for Western readers. The dill sold in India is a different species that is much less pungent than the dill sold in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Europe.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.