What is Sage?
Sage is a natural herb that originated in the Mediterranean region.
It belongs to the same family with the likes of lavender, oregano, rosemary, basil, and thyme.
Traditionally, this herb was used for cooking.
The Italians used it for adding flavor to veal while the French used it for stuffing, sausages, and cured meat.
Apart from cooking, the herb was also used as a primary ingredient in the ‘Four Thieves Vinegar’.
The sage plant comprises of gray-green leaves and flowers.
Depending on the particular species, the color of the flowers may be either blue, purple, white, or pink.
The sage leaves are edible and are also used to make medicine. Its use for medicinal purposes dates back to the first century.
It was used to improve fertility by the ancient Egyptians.
The popularity of sage has kept growing because of its medicinal and culinary value.
Its high antioxidant capacity provides a range of health benefits in the modern times.
It has been used for treating ailments like mental disorders and gastrointestinal discomfort for a long time.
It also packs the extra flavor that can be used to cut down on the sodium intake.
What Makes Sage for Burning Great?
This herb belongs to the mint family and contains a range of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds.
There are over 900 species that have been demonstrated to contain medicinal value.
The herb actually has an extensive history in the medical world.
It was used by the Egyptians since the first century to improve on fertility.
A Greek physician known as Dioscorides used this herb to stop bleeding wounds.
He also used it to disinfect sores, promote ulcer healing, and treat coughs & hoarseness.
Herbalists have since then used the herb to treat different conditions.
This includes sprains, swelling, excessive menstrual bleeding, and asthma.
Best Sage Definition
Sage contains flavonoids which contribute to the bulk of its health benefits.
It also contains luteolin, apigenin, and diosmetin which are well known for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
It contains a polyphenolic compound known as the rosmarinic acid that offers you unlimited health potential.
Its botanical name is ‘salvere’ which simply means ‘to be saved’.
Most people have used its musky and warm essence to make the fragrant dressing for the turkey.
Even though the herb has been used since ancient times to preserve food and medical purposes, it wasn’t until the 17th century that it was used for food flavoring.
This perennial plant grows to a height of about one to two feet and it produces small, deeply-veined, grey-green leaves.
It also has a variety of flavors that makes it special for ornamental purposes.
The most common culinary sage species have their origin in the Balkan and Mediterranean regions while the Russian species traces its roots in Afghanistan.
The pineapple sage is among the most popular types and it bears glowing red flowers with a sweet fragrance.
Sage Therapeutics and Uses
It is a perfect choice for potpourri and teas.
The other popular culinary types include golden sage, purple sage, tricolor, and three-lobed sage.
It comes as either fresh, rubbed, or grounded.
The rubbed category is extremely light and comes off the leaf in a powder-like manner.
The most fragrant and flavorful category is the fresh type.
If you need to make some pungent recipes, this is the right type to go for.
The fresh type is however not as available as the ground type.
The ground sage loses its strength quickly and needs to be stored in a dark, cool, and closed place.
The herb pairs well with cheese and can be used to make delicious recipes. One way of using sage leaves to produce delicious recipes is by chopping them roughly and sprinkling them on mushrooms, caramelized onions, omelets, egg bakes, and even tea.
Sage Essential Oil
There are two main ways through which sage plant can be used. This is in the kitchen and for health & wellbeing.
To begin with, the plant can be used in the kitchen as follows:
Infused Sage Oils
The flavor and earthy aroma of sage can be infused with pure oil for use in the kitchen.
The infusion process is not complicated and takes just a few minutes.
You can, for instance, add it to olive oil for general cooking purposes.
It elevates the standalone status of the oil by adding a little flavor to it.
The herbed oil that results from this infusion process imparts a herbal aroma and flavor to every food that you cook it with.
One of the foods that can benefit from such an infusion is the potato rolls. You can also use the infused oil to cook fowl, in saute, and in marinades.
Sage Herbal Butter
Adding homegrown sage into your butter will simply take it to the next level.
The resultant herbal butter can be used on dishes like grilled chicken or fish.
It can also be tossed with some steamed vegetables.
To add some extra kick to the butter, you can include lemon, shallots, and black pepper in the herbal butter recipe.
Herbal butter offers you a great cooking companion.
It can be used for tasks like dressing boiled potatoes and making a rich beef stew.
For efficient results, the herbal butter needs to be prepared several hours before use.
It then needs to be allowed to cool possibly by placing it overnight in a refrigerator.
Rosemary Sage Seasoning Salt
This salt offers you a fantastic combination of flavor that can be used to make simple and delicious meat rub.
It can also be used to preserve the herb garden bounty.
The seasoned salt can be a perfect holiday gift to give to a friend.
Some of its uses include stirring with soups and stews, seasoning chicken, fish or vegetables, and sprinkling on scrambled eggs.
The other possible uses include making of potato chips, top popcorn, and adding them to desserts.
Sage and Onion Stuffing
Stuffing sage and onion makes a flavorsome combination that can be served in various ways.
It can either be served on its own as a vegetarian dish or be stuffed into a turkey.
It is a classic traditional combination that works well with roasted chicken and turkey.
The slow cooking process makes the onions much sweeter.
Apart from enjoying it with your roasted meat, you can also fill it into a sandwich.
There are just many ways of making a favorite dinner meal but this approach stands out and produces the best results.
Sage Sauces and Soups
The sage benefits extend to different kinds of sauces and soups.
It can, for instance, combine with Italian parsley to make a very powerful pesto.
It also adds a unique dimension to the ordinary tomato sauce.
A good example is the Tuscan-inspired creamy sage which is a perfect sauce that can be sprinkled over pasta and vegetables.
As far as soups are concerned, sage works well with fall vegetables.
Some of the great soups you can create with this recipe include butternut squash soup, chestnut soup, and English onion soup.
Sage is not a traditional herb salad like basil or cilantro but can be paired with certain ingredients to make one.
Some of these ingredients include avocado, roasted potato, and roasted asparagus.
Sage leaves can be mixed with roasted potatoes to make a unique salad.
It can also be used to make a detoxing and refreshing green herb salad.
Sage can be used to make some unique new salads that can be served with either tomato or avocado alternatives.
This salad can also be customized to suit your taste and include the various salad greens like arugula, romaine, and mixed baby greens.
Sage Bread and Pasta
One way of flavoring pasta and the plain home-baked bread way by smearing them with sage butter.
The other way of achieving the same objective is by sprinkling it with sage-infused oil.
You can also choose to mix it into the dough before cooking so as to add some herby flavor to the bread and pasta.
Some of the delicious combination you can try include onion tear-and-share sage bread, parmesan & sage bread, a tasty parsnip, and sage & rosemary focaccia.
The onion bread rolls can be combined with sage to make a very delicious accompaniment to a warm soup.
The Curried Parsnip and Apple Soup can be flavored with sage and be served with Parsnip Crisps and bread.
Also Read: 23 Cocoa Beans Uses and Benefits
Just like the other herbs, sage can be used to give a fragrant earthiness to a dessert serving.
Whether it is a grown-up Meyer lemon or an olive oil cake, sage can add some sweetness and crunchiness to it.
If you are having a fruity dessert, you can add to it some roasted figs and sage.
The other way in which sage can be used is by adding some extra refreshment level to the detox waters and drinks.
Its flavor will make the cocktail parties more enjoyable and refreshing.
Combining it with lemon or grapefruit creates a sage infused water that can cool you down in summer conditions.
It can also be used in rhubarb, cherry iced tea, and a pitcher of blackberry lemonade.