- Artemisia Dracunculus
Tarragon is a hardy perennial herb native to Russia. In Europe there are two main varieties of tarragon: the Russian tarragon (Artemisia Draculoides) and what is known as the French tarragon (Artemisia Dracunculus).
Tarragon can become about 60 – 100 cm (about 1.5 – 3 feet) tall.
The French tarragon has a lot more flavor than the Russian tarragon. This is the one you want to use in your cooking to get the best taste. It has an anise-basil flavor.
The Russian tarragon is much easier to grow and more hardy. This plant has narrower and paler leaves. It has an earthy balsamic flavor which is less pleasant than French tarragon.
The Russian tarragon grows easily from seeds. The French tarragon does not; you will need to buy the French tarragon as a plant.
Be certain to keep a pot of tarragon growing in your window sill to make sure you always have fresh tarragon when you need it.
Tarragon is a must have herb in the kitchen. You can use it with so many different dishes.
Tarragon in tomato dishes or tarragon in potato dishes baked in the oven is really good. Tarragon is often used to flavor egg dishes as well.
This herb is used in tons of chicken dishes or other dishes with white meat. This herb is also used in fish recipes. An alternative is to use tarragon in sauces served with chicken or fish.
Tarragon is perfect in rice dishes. It tastes good with pasta as well. The next time you cook pasta you may want to cook it in some chicken broth and add a few table spoons of freshly chopped tarragon while cooking. The pasta will taste delicious!
Tarragon is not much used in herbalism. It is definitely a cooking herb.
Tarragon is a source for Vitamin A and C.
Some studies show promising results that tarragon may lower the insulin and sugar levels of the blood. That is good news for millions of diabetics who love tarragon mixed in their dishes.
It has been used for poor digestion.
Today tarragon oil is used commercially in perfumes and detergents.
Tarragon has been strongly associated with dragons. “Dracunculus” means “little dragon” in Latin. Tarragon has been nicknamed the “Dragon’s wort”.
In the “Doctrine of Signatures” it was stated that tarragon was effective against venomous bites.
“Doctrine of Signatures” claims that plants resemble body parts, animals or objects. By understanding what “signature” each herb had they could understand how that the plant could be used an herbal remedy. It was believed the roots of tarragon resembled serpents.