Composition and characteristics of dill: a review

Dill, Anethum graveolens L., has been used for its flavour and presumed medicinal properties for many thousands of years. It is still used extensively in Europe and North America. Dill is an annual plant of the Umbelliferae (parsley) family, growing to about one metre in height and bearing typical inflorescences of yellow flowers. Traditionally two species have been of commercial interest: “European” dill, or Anethum graveolens L., and “Indian” dill, or Anethum sowa Roxb. Each of these is available in a number of physical forms:

dill herb—the fresh aerial part of the plant

dried dill herb—the dried aerial part of the plant

dill seed—the dried fruits

dill herb oil (also known as dill weed oil)--obtained hy steam distillation of stalks, leaves, and fruits of Anethum graveolens

dill seed oil--obtained by steam distillation of the crushed dried fruits of eitherAnethum graveolens or Anethum sowa

dill herb oleo-resin--obtained by solvent extraction of stalks, leaves, and fruits of Anethum graveolens 

dill seed oleo-resin--obtained by solvent extraction of crushed fruits of either Anethum graveolens or Anethum sowa

Anethum sowa is primarily grown for its fruit, whereas Anethum graveolens is primarily grown as the herb, although its fruits are also commercially available. The fruit is usually classified as a spice along with other umbelliferous fruits such as caraway, cumin, and coriander, However, the whole plant is regarded as a herb and as such has uses similar to those of parsley herb.

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