Characteristic Of Herb Plants
Herb plants are broadly defined as any type of plant material used for scent or flavor or medicinal or spiritual purposes. One of the most recognizable characteristics of most herb plants is the scent. Many herb plants exude an aroma that can be detected while they’re still growing. In some cases, the scent is more powerful when the leaves of the herbs are chopped, cut or crushed. Many chefs, in fact, can easily distinguish one herb from another by their distinctive scents. A sprig of rosemary, for example, has a very different smell than mint leaves, but both are easily identifiable by their respective aromas. Whether you’re a professional chef or a kitchen novice, you’ve probably used herbs to flavor food you’ve prepared. Just as different herbs have different aromas, they also have varying flavors that complement various foods in differing ways. For example, tarragon can add a savory taste to a roast chicken, while oregano adds a spicy zest to an Italian-style tomato sauce. An herb’s flavor can be just as distinctive as its smell, and both work in concert to flavor food.
Another characteristic of herb plants is that some are prized for their leaves while others are used for their roots. Licorice root, as noted by the University of Maryland Medical Center, is used to flavor licorice candy and as a natural remedy for maladies that range from the common cold to liver disease.