View All Spice Definitions
Information for Parsley
A species of petroselinum belonging to the Apiaceae family, parsley is native to Algeria, Italy and Tunisia or the central Mediterranean region. Later naturalized in other areas of Europe, it is grown for use as a vegetable, herb and spice.
Cultivated as an annual herb in tropical and sub tropical climates, it has bright green feather-like leaflets which grow on umbels. There are more than 30 different types of parsley, but the most common ones used in cooking are the curly, flat leaf or Italian and parsnip rooted or Hamburg parsley.
The different parsley varieties carry a mild fresh flavor, except for Hamburg parsley which has a stronger taste resembling that of celery together with the usual parsley taste.
Often used as a garnish, this herb is a popular component in American, European, Middle Eastern and Western Asian cooking. It is also part of the traditional bouquet garni used for sauces, soups and stock. While the leaves are most commonly used, the stalks are also edible and are sometimes included in cooking as well.
Parsley matches well with a wide variety of foods including salads, sandwiches, pates, poultry, fish, game, meat, rice, potatoes, eggs, pasta, garlic, seafood, legumes and many more.
Photo Credit: RaeAllen