Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Parsley: Curly and Flat

Have you ever wonder: what is the purpose of parsley?  We see them all year round in our local grocery store.  They smell 'fresh' and restaurants always puts some on top of your dishes.  Dennis 'hates' them.

Parsley has a lot of benefit.  It contains lots of vitamins K, C, and A and folic acid.  Not only does it has anti-oxidant, but it  also has chemicals that have been scientifically proven to inhibit tumor growth. Eat and live well!

Parsley adds necessary moisture and freshness to heavy dishes such as risotto, mashed potato, and beef stew. It also removed the pungent aroma associated with fish and lamb.

The Greeks use parsley very extensively in their cooking. While other cuisines only uses a few twigs here and there, Greeks use whole bunches in dishes such as tabbouleh and pesto sauce.

What is the differences between Curly Leaf Parsley and Flat Leaf Parsley?
Flat leaf parsley is also known as Italian parsley.   Flat leaf parsley has more moisture content and softer, which is perfect for blending or purée into sauces or in dishes where the coarse texture would not be desired.  It also have stronger 'fresh' and 'green' flavours.  However, flat leaf parsley can be soggy and turns everything around it green, when it is crushed, so it is not desired for garnishing or presentation.

Curly leaf parsley on the other hand has great textures, lovely for dishes such as cream soup, mash potato and stew.  Its flavour is mild allowing chef to use it for its color without altering the flavour profile of the dish or ending up with gross green runny color.


Left curly - Right flat

Flat Parsley is NOT cilantro or Chinese Parsley.  Cilantro r Chinese Parsley is another can of worm. Generally, cilantro is lime green compared to the dark forest green of parsley.  Cilantro is also more 'limp' compare to parsley.   For some people, cilantro has a very pungent and repulsive aroma.

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