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Tarragon is a spice with a particularly characteristic aroma. Its slightly hot to sweet taste is particularly popular in French and Italian cuisine. There he not only seasons fish and poultry, but also all kinds of sauces and salads. Leaves and flowering twig tips are used for seasoning. Tarragon is commercially available fresh and dried (ground / rubbed)…
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- Ingredients, smell and taste
- Use and preparation
Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus) belongs to the botanical family of the daisy family (Asteraceae). It is up to 150 centimeters high and has bushy branches, it is a perennial plant. The green to blue-green, lanceolate leaves are up to five inches long and one inch wide. The flowers form small nuts. Tarragon is also common under the synonyms Bertram, Dragon (mugwort), egg, emperor and snake herb.
The following types are distinguished:
- German (also French) tarragon: intensely aromatic, fine-spicy, slightly sweet, sometimes aniseed and fennel tones. The cultivation is only possible by cuttings or plant division.
- Russian (also Siberian) tarragon: less spicy, slightly tart to bitter, more robust (hardy). Cultivation is possible by direct sowing from seeds.
Note In the garden, a neighborhood to parsley should be avoided, as the two plants do not "get along".
Ingredients, smell and taste
Tarragon has a slightly bitter, peppery to sweet aroma, and is sometimes perceived as slightly spicy. The main components of the essential oil are estragole, trans- and cis-β-ocimen, anethole and terpenes.
Use and preparation
The leaves and flowering branch tips are used as a spice. Tarragon is available fresh and dried (ground / rubbed) in stores. Tarragon should only be harvested shortly before flowering, so the aroma is particularly pronounced. Tarragon goes perfectly with dishes with chicken, fish, game and eggs such as omelets. It also rounds off sauces (“Sauce Vinaigrette”, “Sauce Béarnaise”), marinades and salads. It is particularly valued in French and Italian cuisine. Many types of mustard are refined with tarragon.
Note Since fresh tarragon is very intense and other spices slightly dominate, it should be used sparingly.
Fresh tarragon can be stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for a few days, and the leaves can also be stored longer in the freezer. Store dried tarragon airtight, dry and dark.
Tip For an aromatic salad infusion, leave the tarragon sprigs in vinegar for a few weeks. It is also suitable for soaking in oil.