Angelica (Citrus maxima) is a common ornamental plant in yards and gardens throughout the world. It is cultivated in Mexico, Central America, Brazil, the Caribbean, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Tunisia, and other countries. The plant is a member of the mint family, with big flat leaves, umbellules of green or white flowers, large dark green stems, and sometimes slightly tinged with red. Angelica is unique among the mint family for the distinctive sweet, lemony odor, distinctly different from other mints such as anise, fennel, caraway, and anise hyssop.
The name “angelica” translates as “winged lily.” A garden filled with Angelica lily flowers can be a beautiful sight. They’re grown primarily for their edible foliage and roots but can be eaten on their own as well. They’re eaten just as you would eat a rose. The leaves and young stems are cooked like raisins, sipped as an herbal tea, and although popular in Mexican cuisine, also used as an ingredient in a wide range of foods.
Herbalists say the best way to harvest Angelica seeds is by hand, though some cultivators use harvester. The herb grows up to three feet tall and has pale blue-green leaves. The small yellow flowers are single, long trumpet-shaped, roughly four inches long, and tapering at the end. The entire plant blooms in late spring, growing to a height of about six feet tall. When mature, the flower buds burst open, and the seeds, which are inside, are released.
The interior is a mildly flavored grayish-white and somewhat bitter. When it’s ripe, the interior has a somewhat strong flavor. The flavor has a nutty flavor and is not as strong as the flavor in the flowers. It’s an unusual and rather unique medicinal herb, the flavor of which compares to coffee. The medicinal properties have been known to relieve nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, colds, and congestion.
In the early 16th century, the herb was first used to remedy coughs, colds, indigestion, and flatulence. It may have helped treat asthma, bronchitis, gout, dropsy, and varicose ulcers. The flavor is slightly bitter, so Angelica leaves were often chewed as a herbal tonic. In addition to its many culinary uses, it has been used medicinally as an effective relief for colds, headaches, toothache, mouth ulcers, rheumatism, flu, dropsy, varicose ulcers, and toothaches. The roots are highly prized for their ability to relieve congestion and reduce fever. In addition to being highly regarded for its culinary and medicinal uses, Angelica has been used for centuries as a chiller for beverages and medicinal purposes.
In the Mediterranean, the herb is cultivated mainly for its edible foliage leaves and flowers. Most Angelica plants are eaten raw or added to other dishes; however, the flowers and roots are most recommended for consumption. The flavor is usually quite tart, with a somewhat bitter flavor reminiscent of strawberries or blackberries. They can be eaten just like they are, although Angelica tends to be more popular as a drink.
The Angelica herb is widely used in cooking, it is also used in many herbal medicines. It is cultivated mostly in southern France, Italy and Spain. The herb is commonly cultivated in a sunny location, with warm temperatures. The plant blooms in late summer and early fall, and the entire herb have to be replanted each year. The Angelica root is very difficult to germinate, so seed should be taken carefully from a mature plant.
With very few exceptions, most cultivated Angelica herbs do not contain the wild species of the plant. The only notable exception is the Latin name, “angelica”; in that name, the plant is called “angelica archangelica”, suggesting that it contains Angelica plants with aerial roots, while it actually has roots only on the bottom of the plant. The Latin name refers only to the genus, while in British English the citation needed for describing the herb would be “wild marigold”. This is why a citation needed to be specified to use the herb in cooking: “wild marigold”.