All About Basil

Basil is one of the most popular herbs used in cooking today. It is a very versatile herb, and is used in Italian, Thai and Vietnamese cuisines amongst many others.

It has a warm, aromatic but gentle flavor, with a hint of spicey aniseed. It's well known that it goes extremely well with tomatoes, where it can be served raw in salads such as the classic Italian Caprese, or cooked into a rich tomato sauce for pasta or other hot dishes.

Basil is also popular as the prime ingredient of pesto sauce (known as pistou in France), which is made by pounding fresh basil leaves with pine kernals, olive oil, parmesan cheese and garlic to produce the distinctive thick green sauce so often used with spaghetti or as a dipping condiment.

Like most herbs, basil is widely available in both fresh and dried forms. Again like most herbs, the fresh version is generally considered to be superior. If you come across a cheap and bountiful supply of the fresh herb, you can dry it slowly in a very low oven before crumbling it and storing in airtight jars. This method of preserving it costs much in terms of flavour though, and a better option is to puree the leaves and freeze into ice cubes, which can then be dropped from frozen straight into the recipe you're cooking.

Basil can be quite expensive to buy in the fresh form, so if you become a fan of the herb you might like to try growing it yourself – it's much cheaper that way, and you can also ensure that the leaves you're using will be as fresh as can be! It's also one of the easier herbs to grow and so is ideal for beginners.

Basil is a native of warm climates, and so needs to be planted in a sunny and sheltered spot if it is to flourish. If you have a patio or terrace with a south facing wall, then sowing it in a pot there is ideal. It's all the better too if you can grow it close to your kitchen for easy picking whenever you need it!

Left to itself, basil will tend to grow into a tall, thin, ungenerous-looking plant with little in the way of edible leaves. You can encourage a more rewardingly bushy growth by 'pinching out' the plant as it grows, removing the top young leaves to encourage more sideways growth. Harvesting the herb regularly will also encourage more vigorous growth.

Basil is a tender annual, and will die off quickly in cold weather. You may be able to prolong its life by bringing it indoors at the first sign of a cold snap, or you could sow a succession of new plants indoors for a year-round supply.

Although it is mainly a culinary herb, basil does have some minor antiseptic properties, but is not widely used medicinally by herbalists. It is however a member of the wider mint herb family, and in common with its relatives it's said to be a good digestive aid.

There are many varieties of basil available, but the most popular are the Genovese type which gives the typical authentic italian flavour and aroma, and the purple-leaved 'holy' basil which is used more often in Asian cooking.

Whichever variety you choose, and whether you decide to buy it or grow it, basil is a treat for your senses and a great addition to your culinary toolbox.

Mustard For Health: Speed Up Your Metabolism And Improve Digestion

Mustard is known to be very helpful for digestion, and can help to speed up your metabolism.

Mustard produces such a tiny seed yet it yields many health benefits. Mustard is one of the most popular spices in the entire world and is used in every country as a favorite spice. Part of the cabbage family, mustard can be used in its whole seed form, as a ground powder or combined with wine, vinegar or some other liquid to create a loose paste.

There are three varieties of mustard: black, brown and white. The mustard plant grows to be quite tall and has a bright yellow flower.

It was imported to US through Spanish missionaries and seen as a cure-all. Its sharp and bitter taste, especially mixes into paste with vinegars, gave off a medicinal fume long before its health benefits were discovered.

Better than a Vitamin

Mustard seeds are a very good source of omega-3 fatty acids as well as calcium, dietary fiber, iron, manganese, magnesium, niacin, phosphorus, protein, selenium and zinc. Selenium is a nutrient that has been shown to help reduce asthma, arthritis and certain cancers. Magnesium also reduces asthma and lowers blood pressure. The effects of mustard are currently being studied for menopausal women and on migraine attacks.

Other Healthy Benefits

Just a few of mustard's possible healthy benefits include:

Speeds up metabolism
Stimulates digestion, increasing saliva as much as eight times more than normal
Inhibits cancer cell growth and possibly prevents other types of cancer as well
Treatment of skin diseases through the application of sulfur found in mustard
Reduces in the severity of asthma
Decreases symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
Lowering of high blood pressure
Prevention of migraines
Facilitation of gastric juices which aids digestive problems and gives digestive aid
Soothing of sore throats, bronchitis, asthma and pneumonia
Disinfectant qualities it provides

Additionally it has four powerful qualities: it is antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic and has anti-inflammatory properties.

How to Add Mustard to Your Diet

Mustard is for more than just hot dogs at the ballpark. Whether in ground powder form, seed form or out of the bottle, there are multiple ways to include mustard into your diet to reap its benefits. And since its pungent, tangy taste enhances food so uniquely, it can easily replace fattier condiment options such as mayonnaise, butters and sugary catsups.

Mustard is often used in Indian, French, German and Irish foods. But there are many more options as well.

Include powdered mustards in salad dressings, egg dishes, pickles, marinades and vinaigrettes.

Sprinkle whole mustard seeds on salads, over vegetables and rice and on roasting meats. Try roasting them first in a dry skillet for a nuttier taste.

Mustard paste is useful. Bottled mustard can be rubbed on meats before roasting. Try dipping cut vegetables in a mustard sauce for a unique, flavorful dip. Mustard paste can easily be added to mayonnaises, vinaigrettes, marinades and barbeque sauces.

Mustard is so versatile; you will find many exciting and new ways to use this old standby.

Most Favourite Spices

Peeper
Scientific name:Piper nigrum Linn.
Family:PIPERACEAE
Vernacular name:Prik Thai

Pepper is native to the monsoon forests of the Malabar coast in southwest India. The pepper vine is now grown in much of tropical Asia. Pepper is the most popular spice in most of the recipes in cookery, to aid digestion, to preserve food and to enchance its flavour. Pepper has a warm, woody smell that is fresh, pungent and agreeably aromatic. Pepper is neither sweet nor savoury, just pungent, and can therefore be used in both types of dish. It is so popular that it has given its name to a wide rang of dishes.

Pepper is perennial vine with stout stem, dark green leaves, white flowering spikes and green to dark red fruit. The vine takes seven to eight years to teach full maturity, and continues to bear fruit for 15-20 years. It is trained up posts of the tress grown for hade in coffee plantations.

There are black, white and green peppercorns. The black pepper which are the whole berries picked unripe and sum dried until shriveled. Is the most widely used, while the white peppercorns are ripe berries with the red skins removed before being bleached white by drying in the sun. it is hotter and less subtle than the black. It is mostly used by sprinkling it in powdered form in many cooked dishes. Green peppercorns are the immature berry pickled in brine or freeze-dried while still fresh, is not as hot and has a clean, fresh taste.

Pepper is said to help relieve flatulence and to have diuretic properties. It is the main source of heat in tropical Asian food.

Lemon Grass
Scientific name:Cymbopogon citrates Stapf
Family:GRAMINEAE
Vernacular name:Ta Khrai

Lemon grass is found throughout Southeast Asia. The culinary stem and leaf have a distinct lemon flavour. The base and lover shoots of the plant are used in cooking, and give a fresh, elusively aromatic taste in many Thai dishes.

A perennial tufted grass, up to 1.5 n has clumped, bulbous stems becoming leaf-blades and a branched panicle of flowers. Lemon grass grown readily in almost any soils, its bulb and leaves constantly multiplying. It is easily grown and thrives in a hot, sunny climate with some rainfall. It is better suited in sandy soil, which produces a higher content of the essential oil.

It is a common ingredient in Thai cooking. The coarse, long flat leaves are normally discarded, and only around 10-15 cm of the bulbous base used. If the lemon grass is to be eaten raw, the outer layers of the bulb should be peeled away until the pinkish ring inside appears; the tender portion is then finely sliced. Lemon grass is also bruised and added whole to many curry dishes, or sliced before pounded to a paste with other ingredients and added to many dishes. Lemon grass remains fibrous safer cooking so avoid chewing it. It combines well with garlic, shallots and chillies, and with fresh coriander to favour fish, shellfish, chicken and pork.

In the past, lemon grass was prescribed to relieve flatulence and as sedative. The culinary stem is used for stomachache, diarrhea, headaches, fevers and is antiseptic. The essential oil is used for cosmetics and food, and in aromatherapy to improve circulation and muscle tone. The antiseptic oil treats athlete's foot and acne, and when sprayed, reduces air-borne infections.

In Praise Of Mustard

Mustard is a highly versatile plant, which lends its fiery flavour to many dishes and condiments through the use of it as both a herb and a spice. Botanically speaking, mustard is a member of the brassica family along with vegetables such as cabbage and broccoli, and as such it contains a high level of sulphur which is responsible for the heat we taste in it, especially in the seeds.

Mustard can be grown either for salad use or for its seeds, which are the main ingredient of the table condiment which most people think of when they hear the word 'mustard'. The greens of the young plant can be eaten in a salad, and have a similar taste to cress, which it is closely related to. The leaves may be a little strong for use on their own, but make a great combination with other salads of character such as rocket, baby spinach or watercress.

Most of us, however, are more familiar with mustard in the guise of a potently hot yellow paste which we use either in cooking or as a condiment – most famously of course on such everyday foods as hot dogs and burgers. Many kinds of table mustard are available, ranging in intensity from the relatively mild American mustard to the sinus-clearing English variety. German and French mustards also have their own distinctive characters, and even within France there are several types available – contrast the standard, brown-coloured French Mustard with the milder, creamier, paler Dijon variety.

Table mustards are made by grinding down the seeds of the mature mustard plant and mixing the results with a little liquid, usually vinegar, along with a seasoning of salt and pepper, and maybe a little sugar to take the edge off the heat. The strength of the finished mustard depends in part on what kind of seeds are used. Black, yellow and white varieties are available, each with different strengths and characteristics, and of course there are many different breeds of mustard plant grown, and each one will have a slightly different flavour.

Many people think that they don't enjoy the taste of mustard, and it's true that it can be something of an acquired taste. If you tried it as a child and were put off for life, why not give it another go now that you have a more mature and developed sense of taste?

Mustard also has medicinal uses, and has traditionally been made into a poultice and applied to the skin to relieve inflammation, and also in the treatment of bronchial problems such as chest colds. If you're tempted to use it in this way, then use a mixture of 10% mustard to 90% flour, and mixed to a paste with water. Be sure though to avoid applying it to sensitive areas, and take great care to avoid the eyes!

Finally, mustard is widely used agriculturally, both as fodder for livestock and as a 'green manure' which can be grown quickly and then plowed back into the soil to enrich and fertilize it in preparation for growing the main crop the following spring.

Herbal Beverages ,mapraw (coconut)

Mapraw (Coconut)

Scientific Name:Cocos nucifera Linn.

Family:PLAMAE

Other names:Maakon Mogoon, Mapraaw (In general) Heddung (Petchboon) Praaw, Mapraaw (The Southern Part ) Yo (Malayu – The Southern Part ) Korsaa (Karen – Mae Hongsorn) Dung (Chong-Chanburi) Pole (Karen – Karnijanuburi) Eiajee (Chinese)

Botanical features:

Trunk A perennial tree for about 20-30 metres high; the trunk which is very tall and thin does not produce any branch.

LeavesThe leaves of a coconut tree are in a compound form, feather – like shape. They are long, narrow and pointed at the end with glossy, deep green colour.

BlossomsA cluster of small – sized flowers growing at the fragrant of husk which covers small blossoms. There are 6 petals of a blossom. Every cluster contains of stamens and pistils, at the end and base, respectively.

FruitA coconut has a round or oblong shape with smooth outer husk. The young coconut is green and turns brown when fully ripe. The middle part is soft fibre. The inner part is hard (the endocarp). The next part is white, soft meat with thin juice.

Usage:

As foodsThe young crown of the coconut tree is for fried food and curry. Young coconut is edible as fresh or being burnt as well as being cooked a hormog (a Thai dish consisteing of steamed fish or chicken in coconut cream and chili sauce). The cluster, with its cut tip, produces syrup for namtaan peep (sugar made from coconut syrup) liquor, and vinegar. Coconut milk is made into magarine and cooking oil. Coconut meat is squeezed into coconut milk or coconut cream for cooking, and sweet dainties and coconut oil.

Food valueCoconut meat contains of about 65% oil with high phosphorus, calcium, carbohydrate, and others. Coconut oil contains variesties of fatty acids which produce rancid smell if left too long.

As medicineAshes of the burnt fresh bark of the coconut palm are used to cure toothache and scabies. Fresh or deied coconut meal is for nourishing body's energy, decreasing urinary discomfort and getting rid of parasitic worms as well as being medicinal drug. Coconut milk, a laxative and medicine for diarrhea, helps solve urinary problem, gallstone and blood vomit. Oil extracted from coconut meat or the hard husk is used to cure the wounds burnt by hot water.
Nam Mapraaw (Coconut Juice);

IngredientsMapraaw Namhom (Sweet-smell coconut milk) Syrup

Herbal Beverages , Sabparod , Toei Hom (Pandanus)

Sabparod (Pineapple)

Scientific Name:Ananas comosus Merr.

Family:BROMELIACEAE

Other names:Sabparod lai (Krungthep ) Lingthong (Petchboon) Kanoonthong, Yanaad Yaannaad (The Centeral Part) Sabparod (Ranong )Makhanaad, Manaad (The Northern Part ) Bornaad (Chiangmai ) Nae (Karen – Mae Hongsorn) Naesaa (Karen – Taak) Maakgaeng (Ngiew – Mae Hongsorn ) Maanya (Khmer)

Botanical features:

TrunkA kind of plant whose life cycle is not short has a short stalk of about 1-3 feet high. There are no branches but spathes that cover the stalk.

LeavesThe leaves of a pineapple tree are growing in a clump, in a spiral form with pointed, tapering ends and without stems. The leaves' bases cover the stalk with their thorny edges. The leaves' skin is smooth with dark green and red streak on the upper part and bluish white color on the underneath.

BlossomsA big bunch of flowers grows from the middle of the pinapple clump. The stems are big and strong. There are 3 small petals of which the upper part is purplish blue and the underneath is white. There are 6 pollens arranging in 2 layers.

Fruit A pineapple fruit has an oblong shape with a broader base. At the end of the fruit, there are dark green leaves in lumps. The fuit is big and has "eyes" around itself. It is green when young and bright yellow when fully ripe, with juice.

Usage:

As foodsThe young crown, briefly boiled, is eaten with namprig (for example, hot- shrimps paste sauce). Fully ripe, sour fruits are ingredients for fried foods whereas the sweet ones are eaten as fruit.

Food valueThe meat of pineapple has a high quantity of Vitamin C, sugar and leaves are laxatives: Raw fruits are used as medicine for improving menstruation, getting rid of parasitic worms. Fully ripe fruits help digestion, sweat discharge and nourishment. Pineapple rinds help improve kidney. The young crown, as well as the roots, is a medicine for gallstone. Moreover, the roots are for Krasai sickness (the sickness that causes thinness and weakness) and for cleaning the urinary vessel.

Nam Sabparod (Pineapple Juice):

Ingredients Pineapple, granulated sugar, powdered salt, freshwater

Toei Hom (Pandanus)

Scientific Name:Pandanus odrous Ridl.

Family:PANDANACEAE

Other names:Waan Khaaw Mhai (The Northern Part )Panaeoring (The Southen Part ) Panaegueji (Muslim Thai ) Pannaan (Narathiwas – Pattanee ) Paanluung (Chinese)

Botanical features:

StalkA grass – type plant branching out in big clump is born from underground stem. The stalk of Toei – Hom is under the ground. The stem and leaves are about 2 feet high growing up on the ground.

LeavesThe leaves of Toei Hom grown on the stalk and around which abundantly arrange themselves in order. They are green, about 8-10 inches long with and oblong shape, pointed tips, and smooth edges. When crushed, the fresh leaves will give sweet, cool smell. The Toei Hom does not have blossoms.

Usage:

As foodsWater squeezed from the Toei Hom leaves is used to flavor and colour Thai sweets.

Food value Fresh Toei Hom Leaves are fragrant, sweet with odorous vaporized oil including chlorophyll, the green substance used for colouring foods.

Herbal Beverages – Taan

Taan (Palmyra Palm, Lontar Plam, Pan Palm, Brab Palm)

Scientific Name:Borassus flabellifer Linn.

Family :P ALMAE

Other Names:Tanntanoad, Taanyai (The Central Part) Taang (Chiangmai-Karen-Taak) Toowthoo (Karen-Mae Hongsorn) Taan (Shan-Mae Hongsorn) Noad (The Southern Part ) Tanaaw (Khmer)

Botanical features:

Trunk A perennial tree is about 30 metres high. The trunk which is long and tapering does not produce any branch. The husk contains hard splinters.

Leaves A Taan leaf has a single, fan-like form. Leaves grow abundantly at the crown of the stem; each leaf is like a long sword of about 140 cm. The end of the leaf is divided into 2 jags; two edges of the leaf contain small scales. The midrib of the leaf is a thick, hard coir with thorny, pointed, and dark edges.

Blossoms Blossoms are in a branching out, big cluster. Small blossoms are separated in gender growing on different trunks of the Taan tree. The male blossoms have along, cylinder form in green color which turns brown when fully ripe. The blossoms of the Taan palm are called "Jaan", which produces sugar.

Fruit The fruits of the Taan palm grow as a bunch/cluster. They are dark at the bottom when fully ripe, and yellow at thehead. The Taan fruits give sweet smell.

Usage:

As foodsYoung blossoms male or female, are ingredients of curries. "Jaan" in used to make sugar: Namtaan Poek, sugar boiled down in pack, and Namtaan Peep, sugar boiled down and put into a quadrilateral container.

Food value Young Taan fruits have phosphorus, calcium, a small quantity of Vitamin C, and others. "Jaaw Taan" (an edible part growing inside the Taan fruit )contains high phosphorus, Vitamin C and others. Nuang Taan (the spadix of the Taan palm) which consists of various kinds of sugar is used to make Namtaan Tanoad (sugar made from Taan syrup).

As medicine The roots of the Taan palm are used to cure internal fever and relieve thirst, as well as to be remedises for tonsil inflammation, for nourishing body's health and getting rid of parasitic worms. The leaves are used to improve mental health after birth delivery, powdered leaves, taken through smoking of blowing, help decrease high blood pressure. The Taan spadix is used to cure Taan sang (a kind of children's disease), and get rid of parasitic worms fresh coir or midrib, made hot by fire and extracted for water, is a medicine for diarrhea and mouth disease.

Minor fruits names

1. Aegle marmelos Correa.
2. Anacardium occidentale Linn. (Cashew-apple).
3. Annona reticulata Linn.
4. Artocarpus lakoocha Buch. (Artocarpus lakoocha Roxb.).
5. Averrhoa carambola Linn.
6. Borassus flabellifer Linn.
7. Carissa carandas Linn.
8. Chrysophyllum cainito Linn.
9. Dillenia indica Linn. (Dillenia speciosa Thunb.)
10. Euphoria longan (Lour.) Steud (Dimocarpus longan Lour.) [Nephelium longana (Lamk.) Camb.] (Euphoria longana Lamk.).
11. Flacourtia indica (Burm. f.) Merr. (Gmelina indica Burm. f.) (Flacourtia ramontchi L'Herit) (Flacourtia sepiara Roxb.).
12. Grewia subinaequalis DC. (Grewia asiatica Masters).
13. Limonia acidissima Linn. [Feronia limonia (L.) Swingle] (Feronia elepehantum Correa).
14. Malpighia glabra Linn. and Malpighia punicifolia Linn.
15. Monstera deliciosa Liebm. (Monstera lennea Koch.).
16. Phoenix sylvestris (Linn.) Roxb. (Elate sylvestris Linn.).
17. Phyllanthus acidus Skeels (Averrhoa acida Linn.) (Cicca disticha Linn.).
18. Phyllanthus emblica Linn. (Emblica officinalis Gaertn.).
19. Physalis peruviana Linn. (Physalis edulis Sims.).
20. Psidium cattleianum Sabine (Psidium littorale Raddi).
21. Spondias cytherea Sonner. (Spondias dulcis Sol. ex Forst. f.) and Spondias pinnata (L.f.) Kurz. (Spondias mangifera Willd.) (Spondias acuminata Roxb.) (Mangifera pinnata L.f.).
22. Syzygium cumini (Linn.) Skeels (Myrtus cumini Linn.) (Eugenia jambolana Lamk.).
23. Syzygium jambos (Linn.) Alston (Eugenia jambos Linn.).
24. Syzygium samarangense (Blume) Merrill & Perry (Eugenia javanica Lamk.) (Myrtus samarangensis BI.).
25. Syzygium uniflora Linn. 26. Trapa natans Linn. var. bispinosa (Roxb.) Makino (Trapa bispinosa Roxb.) and Trapa natas Linn. var. quadrispinosa (Roxb.) Makino (Trapa quadrispinosa Roxb.) Literatrure cited.

Herbal Beverages – Farang – Matoom

Farang (Guava)

Scientific Name: PIsidium guajava Linn.

Family: MYRTACEAE

Other Names:Sida (Nakornprathom) Maguoiga Mamuun (The Northern Part) Maguoi (Chiangmai (Majeen (Tak) Yaring (Lawaa – Chiangmai ) Magaa (Mae Hongsom) Yaa moo, Yamu (The Southern Part )Joompo (Surattanee) Chompuu (Pattanee) Yamubutae – panya (Malay – Naratiwas) Pakgia (Taejiew Chinese)

Botanical features:

Trunk A small- sized perennial tree with its smooth bark scattered with light brown spots. Young branches are in square forms.

Leaves The leaves of the guava tree are in single forms, thick and crude. The leave's underneath part has streaks with soft yellowish hair.

Blossoms A cluster with 1-3 white blossoms or a single. Flower. The sepals are quite hard.

Fruit The guava fruits are big and round or oblong with green color which turns whitish – green when fully ripe, and white with special smell; seeds are brown and quite hard.

Usage:

As foods Guava is eaten as fruit and made into juice.

Food value Fully ripe guavas consist of high Vitamin C which is reducing in quantity when the fruits are over ripe. The fruits also have Vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, Iron, Calcium, various organic acids and a little sugar.

As medicine Guava leaves are used to cure diarrhea. The flesh of well ripe fruits is used as laxative. Organic acids in the fruits help prevent scurry.

Nam Farang (Guava Juice):
IngredientsFully ripe guava
Syrup
Powdered salt
Fresh water

Matoom (Bael Fruit, Bengal Quince)

Scientific Name: Aegle marmelos Corr.

Family: RUTACEAE

Other Names:Mapin (The Northern Part) Gatanta – tale, Toomtaang,

Toom (Pattanee) Mapisaa (Khmer – Mae Hongsom) Panoang (Khmer)

Botanical features:

Trunk A middle – sized perennial plant with the maximum length of 10-15 metres. The Matoom trunk is growing straight in its single form. The trunk and branches are with long and pointed thorns.

LeavesThe leaves of the Matoom tree are in a finger-like, compound form, consisting of about 3 small leaves. The small leaves have an oval shape with pointed tips, and glossy, smooth skin.

BlossomsA cluster of white blossoms growing between leaves and at the tips of branches. A blossom has 4 petals of which the outer part is light green and creamy white inner, with slimy substance.

FruitThe Matoom fruit has an oval shape : round or oblong, with a diameter of about 2.5-4 inches. The skin is smooth whereas the husk is thick, glossy and hard. The young fruit's husk is green which turns yellowish green when it is fully ripe. The meat is yellowish orange and soft, with many seeds.

Usage:

As foods Young tops and leaves are eaten with namprig (for example, hot – shrimp). Young leaves are also ingredients for kaaw yum (a kind of Southern dish) and eaten with Khanomchin (Thai vermicelli). Fully ripe fruits are sweetened cooked.

Food valueFully ripe Matoom fruit has sugar, mucilage, Vitamin A, Calcium, phosphorus, sweet vaporized oil and bitter substance.

As medicine Young fruits are medicine for improving the body's chemical elements, increasing appetite and relieving stomach discomfort. Fully ripe fruits are used to get rid of phlegm, help digestion and nourish human fire element. Ripe fruits are also used to cure bloody bowel movement and to relieve thirst. The skin of the root and the bark are used as medicine for malaria and for relieving stomach discomfort. The root is used to relieve the pain caused by pustles' inflammation, and to nourish the bile.

Nam Matoom (Matoom Juice) :

Ingredients Dried Matoom, Granulated sugar, Fresh water

Herbal Beverages – Buabok

Buabok (Ariatic pennywort)

Scientific Name:Centella asiatic (L.) Urb.

Family:UMBELLIFERAE

Other names:Pakwaen (The Southern Part, Chantabrui, The Eastern Part) Pak nork (The Northern Part) Panahaekhadhao (Karen-Mae Hongsorn) Tiakamchao Hukkuk (Chinese)

Botanical features:

TrunkA short – life cycle plant easily grows on wet soil. Roots grow on the plant's joints from which leaves straightly develop.

Leaves The leaves of Buabok plant are in a single form with long stems and a kindney shape. At the base of each leaf, there is a deep curve. Leaves are jagged around in a triangular form.

Blossoms umbrella – like blossoms are growing form 2-3 joints consisting of 3-4 flowers. Each flower has 5 petals of reddish purple arranging in order with stamens.

Fruit The fruits of the Buabok are dark and very small, durable in flooded area.

Usage:

As foods The whole plant is taken as fresh or briefly boiled and eaten with kahanomchin and namprig, any curries, or as an ingredient or yam, (a salad) as well as Buabok juice

Food value Buabok consists of sweet vaporized oil including bitter substance, glaicocide, high Bitamin A, Calcium and others.

As medicine The whole Buabok plant is used as medicine : water boiled with Buabok cures bruises, relieves inflammation, and thirstiness. Crushed Buabok cures bruises, relieves inflammation, and thirstiness. Crushed Buabok leaves are used to cure fresh or burnt wounds, to discharge urine as well as to be made into cream to relieve skin inflammation.

Name Buabok (Buabok Juice):

Ingredients Buabok leaves
Fresh water
Syrup
Crushed Ice

Many herbs and spices used in Thai cuisine have beneficial medicinal properties. Herewith some examples ( you can find some technical terms below)

"Phrik" in Thai Chilli is an erect, branched, shrub-like herb with fruits used as garnishing and flavouring in Thai dishes. There are many different species. All contain capsaicin, a biologically active ingredient beneficial to the respiratory system, blood pressure and heart. Other therapeutic uses include being a stomachic, carminative and antiflatulence agent, and digest

"Yi-ra" in Thai Cumin is a small shrubbery herb, the fruit of which contains 2 to 4 % volatile oil with a pungent odour, and which is used as a flavouring and condiment. Cumin's therapeutic properties manifest as a stomachic, bitter tonic, carminative, stimulant and astringent.

"Kra-thiam" in Thai Garlic is an annual herbaceous plant with underground bulbs comprising several cloves. Dried mature bulbs are used as aflavouring and condiment in Thai cuisine. The bulbs contain 0.1 to 0.36 % garlic oil and organic sulfur compounds. Therapeutic use are as antimicrobial, diaphoretic, diuretic, expectorant, antiflatulence and cholesterol lowering agents.

"Khing" in Thai Ginger is an erect plant with thickened, fleshy and aromatic rhizomes. Used in different forms as a food, flavouring and spice, Ginger rhizomes contain 1 to 2 % volatile oil. Ginger's therapeutic uses are as a carminative, antinauseant and antiflatulence agent.

"Kha" in Thai Greater Galanga is an erect annual plant with aromatic, ginger-like rhizomes, and commonly used in Thai cooking as a flavouring. The approximately 0.04 volatile oil content has therapeutic uses as carminative, stomachic, antirheumatic and antimicrobial agents.

"Maeng-lak" in Thai Hoary Basil is an annual herbaceous plant with slightly hairy and pale green leaves, eaten either raw or used as a flavouring, and containing approximately 0.7 % volatile oil. Therapeutic benefits include the alleviation of cough symptoms, and as diaphoretic and carminative agents.

Kaffir Lime.jpg – 6270 Bytes KAFFIR LIME (Leech Lime, Mauritus Papeda, Porcupine Orange)

"Ma-krut" in Thai The leaves, peel and juice of the Kaffir Lime are used as a flavouring in Thai cuisine. The leaves and peel contain volatile oil. The major therapeutic benefit of the juice is as an appetizer.

"Ta-khrai" in Thai This erect annual plant resembles a coarse grey-green grass. Fresh leaves and grass are used as a flavouring. Lemongrass contains 0.2-0.4 % volatile oil. Therapeutic properties are as a diuretic, emmanagogue, antiflatulence, antiflu and antimicrobial agent.

"Ma-nao" in Thai Lime is used principally as a garnish for fish and meat dishes. The fruit contains Hesperidin and Naringin, scientifically proven antinflammatory flavonoids. Lime juice is used as an appetizer, and has antitussive, antiflu, stomachic and antiscorbutic properties.

"Sa-ra-nae" in Thai The fresh leaves of this herbaceous plant are used as a flavouring and eaten raw in Thai cuisine. Volatile oil contents give the plant several therapeutic uses, including carminative, mild antiseptic, local anaesthetic, diaphoretic and digestant properties.

"Phrik-Thai" in Thai Peper is a branching, perennial climbing plant from whose fruiting spikes both white and black pepper are obtained. Used as a spice and condiment, Pepper contains 2-4 % volatile oil. Therapeutic uses are as carminative, antipyretic, diaphoretic and diuretic agents.

(Holy Basil)

"Ka-phrao" in Thai Sacred Basil is an annual herbaceous plant that resembles Sweet Basil but has narrower and oftentimes reddish-purple leaves. The fresh leaves, which are used as a flavouring, contain approximately 0.5 % volatile oil, which exhibits antimicrobial activity, specifically as a carminative, diaphoretic, expectorant and stomachic.

"Hom, Hom-lek, Hom-daeng" in Thai Shallots, or small red onions, are annual herbaceous plants. Underground bulbs comprise garlic-like cloves. Shallot bulbs contain volatile oil, and are used as flavouring or seasoning agents. Therapeutic properties include the alleviation of stomach discomfort, and as antithelmintic, antidiarroheal, expectorant, antitussive, diuretic and antiflu agents.

Garlic – Chilli Pepper – Ginger

Garlic
Scientific name:Allium sativum Linn.
Family: ALLIACEAE
Vernacular name: Kra -thiam

Garlic has long been recognized all over the world as a valuable condiment or foods, and a popular remedy medicine for various ailments and physiological disorders. It is hardy bulbous perennial with narrow flat leaves, and bears small white umbel of edible flowers and bulbils. Kra thiam clustered made up of several bulblets called cloves enclosed in a papery white or pinkish sheath. Garilec is used practically all over the world for flavouring various dishes. Garlic is used practically all over the world for flavouring various dishes. Fresh garlic is used in several food preparation in Thailand. Fried Garlic in oil is the most popular for seasoning in Thai dishes. Raw garlic can be used in the manufacture of garlic powder packed into capsules. Garlic purifies the blood, helps control acne, and reduces blood pressure, cholesterol, and clotting. Garlic clears catarrh, thus providing treatment for colds, bronchitis, pulmonary tuberculosis, and whooping cough.

The dried, mature bulbs are popular condiment in Thai cuisine. Garlic is used in numerous Thai dishes where is serves as a flavouring as well as preservative. Thinly-sliced garlic, fried to a crisp golden brown colour, is used to garnish savoury Thai dishes.

Chilli Pepper
Scientific name:Capsicum annum L.
Family:SOLANACEAI
Vernacular name:Prik

Chillies grow in all parts of the tropics, usually grows to 30 cm-1 m (1-3 ft) high. There are many varieties of Chillies, varying in shape, colour, size and pungency of fruits Generally, the large, round, fleshy varieties are milder than the small, thinskinned, pointed types. They are used ripe, when they may be red, orange, yellow or purple, and unripe, when they are green. Ripe chillies are available dried, crushed, fladed and ground. Dry chillies is extensively used as a spice in all types of curry dishes. Fresh chillies are rich in vitamin C, they help in the digestion of starchy foods and may be taken as a tonic. In large does, chillies may cause stomach and intestinal burns.

Ginger
Scientific name:Zingiber officinale Rosc.
Family:ZINGIBERRACEAE
Vernacular name:Khing

One of the oldest and most important spices is now widely grown. The fresh rhizome is knobbly, off-white of buff-coloured and often branched. The pale yellow flesh should not be too fibrous. The ginger plant grows up to 1 m on partly shaped sloped. It has narrow pointed leaves and small yellow, purple-lipped flowers. The hard, knobbly rhizome is about 2 cm in diameter. Rhizomes are used fresh or preserved. Ginger's flavour is hot and slightly biting. In cooking ginger is mostly used fresh. It is an essential ingredient of curry powder and other spice lends, and is found in gingerbread, biscuits, cakes, puddings, pickles and many Asian vegetable dishes. It is widely used in medicine as a digestive aid. Ginger tea made by infusing dried or fresh rhizome in boiling water for five minutes. It is a warming drink and thought to improve the circulation.

An erect plant with thickened, fleshy and very aromatic rhizome. The stem is 0.4 to 1 metre high with long and narrow leaves arranged alternately in two ranks along the stem. The inflorescence is cone-shaped, borne on a long stalk which emerges from the underground stem. Individual flowers are greenish-yellow with a small dark purple tip. The rhizomes differ in shape and size in the different cultivars.