Bay Leaves (ground)
Bay leaf is one of the most sought after culinary spices for flavoring soups, casseroles, stews, fish, meat, poultry, puddings and marinades. Ground Bay Leaf will impart the flavor without having to hunt for the leaf when the dish is cooked.
Bay leaves are a fixture in the cooking of many cuisines, being used in soups, stews, meat, seafood and vegetable dishes. The leaves also flavor many classic French dishes, most often used whole in a bouquet garni and removed before serving as they can be abrasive in the digestive tract.
Bay leaves can also be crushed or ground before cooking. Crushed bay leaves impart more of their desired fragrance than whole leaves, but are more difficult to remove, and thus they are often used in a muslin bag or tea infuser.
Ground bay laurel may be substituted for whole leaves, and does not need to be removed, but it is much stronger due to the increased surface area.
Bay leaves are gathered from a dense foliage evergreen tree of the laurel family. There are many poisonous varieties of laurel tree and the true bay laurel is the only variety that is suitable for cooking. Also not to be confused with Indian bay leaves, which have an entirely different flavor.
Bay leaves have a pleasing camphor-like aroma and pungent taste. 1 or 2 leaves, preferably dried, are sufficient to add flavor to soups, stews and casseroles.
Bay leaves, along with thyme, marjoram and parsley constitute a traditional bouquet garni. Herbie's premium grade bay leaves are grown in Australia and carefully dried to maintain their color and flavor.
Other Common Names: Bay Laurel, Poet's Laurel, Roman Laurel, Sweet Laurel, Wreath Laurel.
Botanical Name: (Laurus nobilis)
Health Benefits: Bay leaves are thought to soothe the stomach, relieve flatulence, and help to heal ulcers. They are considered an excellent source of bone strengthening minerals, particularly copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, selenium, zinc and magnesium. In addition to being a good source of antioxidant vitamins, bay leaves are a good source of B vitamins, which is important for proper metabolic and nervous system functioning.