Laurel tree or bay laurel is an herb, which name is connected with legends and mythological history. This aromatic and evergreen tree is also called Laurus nobilisis. This name derived from Latin, “Laurus” means to glorify and “nobilis”- to noble. This tree is native to Mediterranean areas.
The ancient Greek legend says that laurel tree was made from the body of nymph, whose name was Daphna. Laurel wreath was given to athletes as a kind of present in early Greece.
Bay laurel, or to be more exactly, its leaves are used in cooking. They are very aromatic and useful. The list of dishes and recipes, which contain leaves of this tree, is huge. You can flavor with laurel leaves your favorite soups or stewed vegetables. Laurel tea is very aromatic and useful, so it may become one of you favorite drinks. Store dried leaves of this plant and use them as a spice.
Besides using bay laurel in culinary, it is also used in medicine. Due to the fact that laurel is a source of many volatile active components; vitamins A, C; minerals (magnesium, zinc, selenium, iron, manganese, calcium, potassium, copper) it performs antiseptic, anti-oxidant, anti-viral, anti-fungal, analgesic, diuretic, digestive, nuerotonic and even anti-dandruff functions. Laurel bay acts like immune booster, regulates metabolism and helps to prevent cancer and migraine headaches. Laurel tree oil, which is made from leaves and berries, is also extremely useful: it helps to cure colds, bronchitis, earaches, arthritis, sprains and sore muscles.
However, this useful herb is not the best variant of treating for pregnant women. The oil should be taken only externally. If you cook meal with laurel leave, don’t eat it, it can’t be digested.