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Parsley - what good is it?

ZenSojourner Aug 23, 2010 12:41 AM

It tastes like nothing to me. Kind of green and grassy if anything.

What is it supposed to add to a dish, given that it seems to be tasteless? at least to me . . .

  1. willow_leaves Feb 9, 2011 03:19 PM

    I find most lettuces a bit textureless, nutritionless and flavourless, so I use flat-leaf parsley instead.
    Two big handfuls of leaves in my daily salad
    1 poblano chilli roasted on the burner,
    dinner plate's worth of parsley + cilantro,
    escarole if I've got any
    jerk sauce
    olive oil
    a cup of finely-chopped stems in every soup (without parsley and onions, I'd probably starve..) + a handul of leaves to finish.
    It's verdant, it's fragrant, it's beautiful, and I go through about six bunches a week.
    I adore parsley, it's an utter workhorse where cooking and eating are concerned.
    Besides, have you seen the nutrients it provides? worth a gander, I'd say.

    4 Replies
    1. re: willow_leaves
      Val Feb 9, 2011 04:16 PM

      Nice post, willow....and welcome! Your salad sounds really great...must try it out...I like combining buttery soft lettuces, then some hardy dandelion, kale, then some peppery arugula from my garden and dill from my garden for a mix of greens lately...I also love to use flat parsley as my "lettuce." *jerk sauce* on a salad...now there's something different...do you use Walkers Wood? I think it's a bottled type of jerk...thanks!

      1. re: Val
        willow_leaves Feb 11, 2011 03:15 PM

        Thank you!
        And no, I just make a batch a few times a week and keep it in the fridge.
        It's probably not very authentic (I use block tamarind rather than tomato paste for tartness) and certainly not very smooth - I don't have either a blender or a kitchen processor, but I'm cheap and.. it's, erm, pretty good.
        Mmm dandelion greens! If only I could convince the people I live with that bitter is good (they're slowly warming up to chilli peppers, so dum spiro spero) and dandelions aren't strictly for bees and crazy French people.

      2. re: willow_leaves
        c oliver Feb 9, 2011 04:43 PM

        Yes, welcome. Nice first post. I'd never thought of this but I really like the idea of combining parsley and cilantro for a salad, esp. in winter when so many salad greens are so ho-hum.

        1. re: c oliver
          willow_leaves Feb 11, 2011 03:20 PM

          Thank you =) I.. I'm.. it's very hard for me to eat something that tastes like mostly nothing on its own - iceberg lettuce, at least the way it's usually purveyed, tastes like honesty and purity (if you like it) and 'screaming void of nothingness' if you don't.
          I find myself in latter group, and lately I've been wondering if I'd eat lovage as a makeshift salad green - since it grows so well.

      3. b
        Breezychow Jan 1, 2011 02:55 PM

        Sadly, you're just not using/enjoying the right parsley. First off - the curly stuff is useless for anything but an inedible garnish.

        Not only is the Italian flat-leaf type the only way to go, but growing your own is - for me at least - the only way to enjoy it at its best. Fresh, flavorful, even slightly spicy at times. My favorite variety is "Giant of Italy", but you'll never find it for sale in any grocery store. Some farmers markets carry it during the spring & summer months, but the best way to enjoy it is to grow it yourself.

        Of course, if you've already decided you hate parsley without wanting to take the time to experiment further, I guess growing it yourself is out of the question.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Breezychow
          iL Divo Jan 1, 2011 05:15 PM

          Sorry, not sure who you're referring to, probably OP but in case you were talking to me, I'll address.
          I've grown my own 2 varieties for the last several years. Although it's there at the ready in a few places in my yard+pots, it's still not much of a draw for me. I keep growing it (for one) because every year it springs back up to life from it's seeds I presume, and two, just in case I want some as an ingredient it's there.

        2. iL Divo Jan 1, 2011 08:08 AM

          I've made a version of this sauce for our DD. She adores the stuff and it seems to keep well in her frig but then it doesn't have to last long in there, with grilled sourdough, it's *gone in 60 seconds* practically. :-)

          Last time I had lunch at Gaucho Grill [3rd Street Mall in Santa Monica] the waitress seemed really nice to me,so I decided to try and pick her brain to see if I could get some help with the very flavorful sauce. I told her that this restaurant was one of our DD's favorites and how she loved the milenese steak and the dipping sauce which I guess is their dipping sauce for the bread also. I managed a little help out of her about how the sauce was made although she wasn't supposed to say I'm sure, but it gave me an idea of how to construct a batch for our girl.

          It was truly delicious and I am thankful for her help as only a few of the original inredients would have made it into mine had she not been so helpful. These are helpful as a starting point, do your own editing according to your taste though. Our DD loves a lot of garlic and olive oil. So to cut the oil and add acidity the lemon or vinegar is important, just taste as you go.

          or this one which is a bit different

          1 Reply
          1. re: iL Divo
            alkapal Feb 11, 2011 02:37 PM

            chimichurri -- one of my fave food groups.

          2. s
            sushigirlie Dec 31, 2010 07:17 PM

            It adds freshness and color to Italian and Middle Eastern dishes. It's not a bold taste; that's why it's so ubiquitous.

            1. ToxicJungle Dec 31, 2010 06:31 PM

              There is a pasta dish that I like to make, a lot of coarsely chopped parsley with scrambled egg, sliced garlic, butter and egg noodle

              1. TheSnowpea Dec 31, 2010 03:03 PM

                In this entire thread, nobody mentioned how curly leaf parsley kinda smells like gasoline! (at least it does to me -- so does epazote and yet I love it). Still, I find flat parsley quite enjoyable and like someone said higher up, it brings a fresh, vegetal flavour to things. I suppose it has the same quietly enhancing qualities as the holy trinity of carrot, onion and celery, it not strictly necessary, but part of the layering of flavours and sensations.

                Parsley is related to coriander... I wonder if coriander haters (it's genetic) also have trouble with parsley.

                7 Replies
                1. re: TheSnowpea
                  scubadoo97 Jan 1, 2011 08:56 AM

                  I personally think the curly parsley get's a bad rap. I don't find it tasteless nor smelling of gasoline. It may not be quite as strong in flavor compared to the flat leaf variety but it still taste like parsley. We grew up eating tabbouleh made with curly leaf parsley. I wouldn't think twice of using it if I couldn't find the flat leaf

                  1. re: scubadoo97
                    alkapal Feb 11, 2011 02:35 PM

                    my lebanese law partner used the curly to make tabbouleh, too.

                  2. re: TheSnowpea
                    darklyglimmer Jan 1, 2011 09:30 AM

                    I don't mind coriander, but I find parsley useless. Too grassy.

                    I do, however, like the smell of gasoline.

                    1. re: darklyglimmer
                      iL Divo Jan 1, 2011 10:31 AM

                      Now wait a minute darklyglimmer, are you me?
                      Ditto to your comment.
                      Except I do like coriander and cilantro a lot :)

                      1. re: iL Divo
                        darklyglimmer Jan 1, 2011 02:28 PM

                        If I'm you, can you take us to the doctor on Monday and get us something for this @#%! cold? And maybe stop at the store on the way home and get milk and orange juice?


                        1. re: darklyglimmer
                          iL Divo Jan 1, 2011 04:16 PM

                          You're not suffering with a cold right now too are you? Because that'd be just weird.
                          Husband and I are both taking vit-C/ suda / cough syrup / anti ache pills :(

                    2. re: TheSnowpea
                      greygarious Feb 9, 2011 05:02 PM

                      < I wonder if coriander haters (it's genetic) also have trouble with parsley. >

                      This cilantrophobe does.

                    3. b
                      BH. Dec 31, 2010 11:01 AM

                      an old English bread stuffing for chicken or turkey, lemon and parsley, tart and zesty, superb!!!

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: BH.
                        escondido123 Dec 31, 2010 12:12 PM

                        Did anyone mention winter pesto? That's one way I love flat leaf parsley. Use it in your recipe instead of basil when that's not in season--great fresh flavor on pasta or swirled into a soup. I finally figured out how to keep a bunch of parsley fresh. I buy a dollar bunch at the Farmers' Market each week. As soon as I get it home I run it under the water with stems facing the faucet. Once it's had a good rinse I shake it off, roll in a paper towel and tuck into a plastic bag. Stays fresh with no slime.

                      2. scubadoo97 Sep 3, 2010 12:43 PM

                        Parsley is certainly not tasteless. I never understood it's use as a garnish. I use it quite often.

                        1. c
                          Cachetes Sep 3, 2010 08:11 AM

                          Did anyone say burgers yet? Because it was great in some turkey burgers I made last week!

                          1. g
                            gfr1111 Aug 27, 2010 09:43 PM

                            I agree with you, ZenSojourner. Parsley tastes like nothing to me. I keep putting it in recipes because I figure that the people who created the recipe would not have called for it, if it didn't do something for the dish. But what it is escapes me. And if you leave it out, I don't see much difference in the dish. In things like tabouleh, the parsley seems to be the vehicle for stronger flavors in the dish, but adds little itself.

                            7 Replies
                            1. re: gfr1111
                              alkapal Aug 28, 2010 07:15 AM

                              parsley is the HEART of tabbouleh!

                              1. re: alkapal
                                Veggo Aug 28, 2010 08:09 AM

                                And fresh parsley helps dead stuff taste like it hasn't been dead for long.

                                1. re: Veggo
                                  c oliver Aug 28, 2010 12:59 PM

                                  Excellent point!

                                  1. re: c oliver
                                    ZenSojourner Aug 28, 2010 04:51 PM

                                    Somehow I am NOT encouraged . . . . O.o

                                    1. re: ZenSojourner
                                      Veggo Aug 28, 2010 05:19 PM

                                      C'mon! Parsley puts a lively step in steak tartare, meatballs, etc. , and other dead stuff. It was unfair for kattyeyes to mention my meatballs that bounce, though.

                                      1. re: Veggo
                                        ZenSojourner Aug 28, 2010 05:25 PM

                                        Steak tartare! Now we go from bad to worse! Not just dead stuff, but RAW dead stuff.

                                        oh horrors! LOL!

                                        1. re: ZenSojourner
                                          Veggo Aug 28, 2010 05:36 PM

                                          I ate roadkill long before Bourdain and Zimmern.
                                          And I wasn't paid to do it. And some of it didn't need cookin'. Some did.

                            2. darklyglimmer Aug 27, 2010 07:05 AM

                              I'm with you, ZenSojourner. Tastes like grass to me, and I'm violently allergic to grass so it's not a good association. I still put it in things but never enough to notice a difference; mostly I use it as a garnish, sprinkled over whatever to make it look nice. And, yes, I use the flat-leaf kind. I don't like tabbouleh either, no matter who makes it, so I think that parsley is just one of the very few foods that I genuinely don't like.

                              My parsley haiku (don't bother counting the syllables, it doesn't scan):

                              O, parsley
                              You taste like grass but you're in freaking everything
                              Why do I keep buying you?

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: darklyglimmer
                                ZenSojourner Aug 27, 2010 09:38 PM

                                LOL! The soul of a poet, and a cook too!

                              2. j
                                jeanmarieok Aug 26, 2010 01:13 PM

                                I am a big parsley fan. I think a little parsley, even just sprinkled on top, adds a freshness that makes the dish taste better.

                                1. p
                                  PAO Aug 26, 2010 12:34 PM

                                  Others are right. Forget curly parsley, used Italian flat. Used in many Mediterranean cuisines including Italian. I frequently put in more than the recipe calls for.

                                  1. p
                                    Pincus Aug 26, 2010 09:59 AM

                                    I love fresh flat leaf parsley. Rarely buy the other kind so I can't comment on it. And dried parsley, you might as well sprinkle green cardboard flakes on your food except the cardboard has more fiber.

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: Pincus
                                      1sweetpea Aug 26, 2010 10:54 AM

                                      I just made charmoula last night for a fish tagine. I used a large bunch of flat-leafed parsley and a medium sized bunch of cilantro, plus garlic, cumin, coriander, paprika, salt, olive oil and lemon juice. It was fantastic.

                                      I recently read a recipe on Jamie Oliver's site that called for fresh parsley. He specifically states that the parsley must be freshly picked from the garden to impart the fullest flavour. Since I'm always buying mine at the store, I wonder how much flavour is missing in my parsley, which seems quite powerfully tasty to me.

                                      1. re: 1sweetpea
                                        Harters Aug 26, 2010 11:08 AM

                                        I guess any vegetable/herb/fruit is going to taste at its best immediately after picking (the reason why frozen peas are usually so much better than fresh). I doubt whether youre missing much with shop-bought, so long as stock turns over reasonably quickly - I usually find the best at the small Asian shops.

                                        1. re: Harters
                                          buttertart Aug 26, 2010 11:12 AM

                                          We grew parsley when I was little - the curly one. It's a quite pretty plant and survives frost quite well (we picked it under snow one time). It tasted exactly like the bought kind.

                                    2. tim irvine Aug 23, 2010 07:40 PM

                                      I use a lot of it in hummus and tabbouleh. I cannot imagine steamed new potatoes without it (and butter, of course). It always seems right with boeuf bourguinon. Other than those things I never think of it. I agree about the texture of finely minced curly parsley, sort of gritty. Here in Central Texas it does so poorly in the summer that it is just never around in my garden.

                                      1. ZenSojourner Aug 23, 2010 07:32 PM

                                        Honestly I've never paid much attention to parsley since I've never cooked anything that called for it. I've been cooking East Asian food almost exclusively for nearly 30 years. Not much call for parsley in Indian cuisine.

                                        1. m
                                          mickeygee Aug 23, 2010 05:07 PM

                                          besides tabboleh, one of my favorite and easy pasta dishes uses a lot of parsley. Saute 1 onion per serving until caramelized, toss with a beaten egg and about 1/2 cup - 1 cup chopped parsley per serving and about 2 tbs of parmesan and stir into hot pasta to cook the egg. Yum!

                                          1. iL Divo Aug 23, 2010 03:38 PM

                                            I am not a parsely lover either.
                                            I have dried, I have it growing also in my garden, Italian flat leaf.
                                            To me, it's not a flavor I want in things I make.
                                            I don't get what the big deal is about it.
                                            Emeril uses it always and says Hilda uses it.
                                            So, that doesn't make me want to use it just because he and his mom do.

                                            I see it being used on perfectly already good looking things on tv, then they go dump parsley on top of it and it now has a whole new flavor, and I didn't say better more improved flavor either.

                                            1. greygarious Aug 23, 2010 03:32 PM

                                              Here's a previous thread on this topic: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6091...

                                              1. eight_inch_pestle Aug 23, 2010 03:11 PM

                                                Aside from all the more common uses, I made a pretty decent parsley salad from a Deborah Madison book a couple-few times, and was just thinking about trying a parsley soup recipe from (I think) Simon Hopkinson.

                                                ...And another thing that I don't think has been mentioned above: dumplings for chicken soup. Almost makes me long for winter. Almost.

                                                1. rcallner Aug 23, 2010 02:49 PM

                                                  Parsley is brilliant in white clam spaghetti, Ed Giobbi style. And perfect in a sliced fennel/artichoke heart/hearts of palm salad.

                                                  1. alkapal Aug 23, 2010 02:40 PM

                                                    >>>>""I've NEVER bought any. Just eat what they stick on my plate at a restaurant from time to time.""<<<<

                                                    that is your problem, right there.

                                                    1. ZenSojourner Aug 23, 2010 09:08 AM

                                                      Well it is the curled I've always seen that seems to have no taste, so maybe I should try the flat.

                                                      Or maybe whatever it is that's in Parsley that the rest of you can taste, I just lack the ability to taste. But the stuff I've tasted up to now just doesn't have any taste to speak, to me.

                                                      7 Replies
                                                      1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                        c oliver Aug 23, 2010 09:38 AM

                                                        I can't remember the last time I bought the curly kind. Decades perhaps?

                                                        1. re: c oliver
                                                          ZenSojourner Aug 23, 2010 10:02 AM

                                                          I've NEVER bought any. Just eat what they stick on my plate at a restaurant from time to time.

                                                          1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                            LauraGrace Aug 23, 2010 02:30 PM

                                                            Ah, see, that explains it. Curly tastes like... nothing. Like grass. But... The flat is fresh, bright, almost citrusy-tasting. I almost always have it in the fridge in a glass of water and use it two or three times a week.

                                                            1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                              visciole Dec 31, 2010 05:04 PM

                                                              Agree. The flat-leafed kind has way more flavor. If you get some fresh, or, better yet, from someone's garden, it has a LOT of flavor, and is great in many dishes -- for me it's a main ingredient in numerous salads, pastas, etc.

                                                              1. re: visciole
                                                                woodleyparkhound Jan 1, 2011 10:00 AM

                                                                I always have flat on hand (never curly). I use it in large quantities when I make pasta, salads, baked potatoes, or most "white" foods. It adds both color and flavor...and vitamins.

                                                                1. re: woodleyparkhound
                                                                  iL Divo Jan 1, 2011 10:29 AM

                                                                  Good point WPH...
                                                                  Is that Balboa park that your screen name refers to?
                                                                  Just curious, love that park :)

                                                          2. re: ZenSojourner
                                                            jmcarthur8 Aug 26, 2010 12:45 PM

                                                            My husband said the same thing - he didn't see why anyone would use something with no flavor. Curly or Italian, they both have an earthy green tangy flavor to me, which I like very much. We can both eat from the same sprig, and he can't taste what I taste in it.

                                                            DH has found though, that he can detect some flavor in the parsley since he quit smoking a couple years ago. I guess it takes a while for the taste buds to recharge.

                                                          3. Perilagu Khan Aug 23, 2010 07:38 AM

                                                            I generally agree that parsley is not much good for anything other than decoration, and that's why I always sub Italian parsley for parsley.

                                                            6 Replies
                                                            1. re: Perilagu Khan
                                                              jen kalb Aug 23, 2010 08:05 AM

                                                              italian parsley = flat leaved parsley, is the same herb as curled, but I agree that for some reason, the flavor of the flat is infinitely better than the curled (maybe hybridization of the curled has made it so) - I sent my daughter out for parsley the other day and the curled she brought back mistakenly lacked the very nice flavor of the flat leaved, as well as having a dryer quality.

                                                              Good fresh (flat-leaved) parsley is an essential herb for me, both as garnish and ingredient for italian and other mediterranean foods, grain salads, etc..I wish I could keep a patch going in my garden, but so far no luck (its biennial and doesnt seem to seed in too readily for me.

                                                              1. re: jen kalb
                                                                Perilagu Khan Aug 23, 2010 09:27 AM

                                                                Curley also seems to have a more fibrous texture to me. If you don't mince it finely, it creates a rough texture in a dish.

                                                                1. re: Perilagu Khan
                                                                  jen kalb Aug 23, 2010 10:55 AM

                                                                  agree re the texture issue..

                                                                2. re: jen kalb
                                                                  ChristinaMason Aug 23, 2010 09:49 AM

                                                                  I like both curly and flat. Curly seems to be much easier to chop finely. I might be imagining this, but to me, it has a stronger, more bitter edge. I like it in fettuccini alfredo.

                                                                  1. re: jen kalb
                                                                    elenacampana Aug 26, 2010 09:54 AM

                                                                    I find a big difference, too, between what I get in even a great market and what I grow myself - the home-grown has a very pronounced taste, almost a little anise-like, and the texture is crisper. I keep it going, even in Boston, right up until it snows,and then bring it in and stick it in a pot to keep me going in winter - it's like a tonic against the dark and cold! (and freeze the stems to add to soup). Absolutely essential, yes!

                                                                    1. re: elenacampana
                                                                      ChristinaMason Aug 26, 2010 08:19 PM

                                                                      This reminds me of the distinct flavor difference between grocery story celery and farmer's market celery. Much more pronounced flavor (and tougher, less watery texture) in the latter.

                                                                3. v
                                                                  Val Aug 23, 2010 06:24 AM

                                                                  What GOOD is it? Here's some nutritional info' in case it's of any interest...parsley
                                                                  is a powerhouse of nutrients and an anticancer food:

                                                                  I've been adding it to salads, smoothies, everything!

                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Val
                                                                    epabella Aug 23, 2010 06:52 AM

                                                                    nice post there! along with being tasty and healthful, parsley is also great for dinner dates when you forgot the binaca or listerine and are about to kiss goodnight. because of it's NATURAL antiseptic qualities, you can use it on wounds and open cuts or in a poultice.

                                                                    1. re: Val
                                                                      Phurstluv Aug 23, 2010 04:20 PM

                                                                      Yes, it is actually incredibly healthy and many juice & drink it like wheatgrass.

                                                                      1. re: Phurstluv
                                                                        iL Divo Aug 23, 2010 04:26 PM

                                                                        my big sister has girly problems, has all her life, and her doctor has had her own parsley tea for 40 years, says it's very good for her, simply boils bushels of parsley in water, then drinks like tea

                                                                    2. alkapal Aug 23, 2010 05:08 AM

                                                                      chimichurri! http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Chimichurri-Sauce-107159

                                                                      italian salsa verde http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                      "garden" gazpacho

                                                                      i always have italian parsley in the fridge, for the things i've mentioned, and to garnish eggs, chicken, salads...so many things.

                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                      1. re: alkapal
                                                                        Cachetes Aug 23, 2010 05:14 AM

                                                                        a quick chopped handful thrown onto a plate of pasta as it is being served, or into a soup, are also great ways to add some bright flavor to a dish. like you, we use it often with eggs as well

                                                                        fresh and flat (Italian) is the good stuff

                                                                        1. re: Cachetes
                                                                          alkapal Aug 23, 2010 05:34 AM

                                                                          right, pasta! it always brightens up the dish. the vegetal "greenness" gives a nice contrast to the pasta's starch, and the oil or other dressing.

                                                                          i like to puree it with other herbs, garlic, and anchovies, capers or whatever, plus a little EVOO, and stir into soups or plain pasta. the herb paste is also nice on a sandwich, for blander meats like turkey.

                                                                          i also make a parsley herb-spice paste to blend into meat that i use for kabobs. essential!!!! http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/727239

                                                                          1. re: alkapal
                                                                            Cachetes Aug 23, 2010 05:45 AM

                                                                            I love the idea of making my own herb paste just to keep around for when called for- I'll have to give it a try!

                                                                            1. re: Cachetes
                                                                              alkapal Aug 23, 2010 02:37 PM

                                                                              it'll last a couple of days, with olive oil on top, esp.

                                                                              it is better just to make a small batch for freshness.

                                                                          2. re: Cachetes
                                                                            c oliver Aug 23, 2010 09:37 AM

                                                                            I had none in the house recently when I made carbonara. It suffered from the lack. It just adds a freshness, another note of flavor.

                                                                          3. re: alkapal
                                                                            Veggo Aug 23, 2010 05:16 AM

                                                                            +1 for fresh chimichurri, a very versatile and flavorful condiment

                                                                            1. re: alkapal
                                                                              iL Divo Aug 23, 2010 03:40 PM

                                                                              ok, I'll give you a yes to chimichurri.
                                                                              that stuff is the bom I admit.

                                                                              and also, I use the dried in meatballs but honestly don't know why, it just seems right to put it in there. {?}

                                                                            2. h
                                                                              Harters Aug 23, 2010 03:22 AM

                                                                              Wonderful taste say in tabbouleh, where it forms the main flavouring.

                                                                              Also, a classic sauce for fish or ham.

                                                                              Excellent "fresh" garnish for plain cooked potatoes.

                                                                              Finely chopped with garlic and lemon zest, you've got the Italian gremolata (great as a topping for fish, IMO).

                                                                              17 Replies
                                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                                luckyfatima Aug 23, 2010 05:46 AM

                                                                                Right. Flat leaf parsley is a major herb in Palestinian, Jordanian, Syrian, and Lebanese cuisine. I am not sure how much it is used in other Near Eastern or Mediterranean cuisines, such as other nearby Arabic, or Israeli, or Greek cuisine...maybe someone else could confirm if parsley is used prolifically in any cuisines near to the Levant with which I am less familiar. Also, it is my impression that Italians use a lot of parsley. But in Levantine cuisine you have tabbouleh of course, but also parsley in kababs, chopped meat preparations, and also used as a garnish cum seasoning in many, many dishes. In that region, parsley is a seasoning that is just as important as lemon juice.

                                                                                I can taste parsley.

                                                                                1. re: luckyfatima
                                                                                  Harters Aug 23, 2010 07:51 AM

                                                                                  As with any food, it's used extensively where it's grown. And as it's a plant suited to temperate climates, you'll find it all the way from the Med to northern Europe (as in the sauce for fish & ham I mention)

                                                                                  1. re: luckyfatima
                                                                                    oakjoan Aug 23, 2010 04:02 PM

                                                                                    "Italian" or flat leaf parsley is the only kind I can stand...in fact, I like it a lot. The curly stuff is nice on a place as a garnish, but not to eat. It has no taste.

                                                                                    I use it in making my Paula Wolfert Middle-Eastern Breakfast Burrito - flat bread folded around a mix of feta, chopped flat-leaf parsley, cukes, tomatoes, red peppers, green onions and anything else you want to toss into the mix. Olive oil is poured over and mixed in and a scoop is delicious in flat bread. We have it for breakfast several times a week during the good veg season.

                                                                                    1. re: oakjoan
                                                                                      iL Divo Aug 23, 2010 04:06 PM

                                                                                      I bite on curly parsley rarely but I can for sure taste a taste of parsley.
                                                                                      Hum, maybe my tastebuds are off kilter.......

                                                                                      1. re: oakjoan
                                                                                        luckyfatima Aug 23, 2010 04:55 PM

                                                                                        Gosh that sounds great oakjoan! I must give that ME burrito a try .

                                                                                        1. re: luckyfatima
                                                                                          oakjoan Aug 23, 2010 05:42 PM

                                                                                          Yeah, that's one of the many reasons I love P. Wolfert.

                                                                                        2. re: oakjoan
                                                                                          bon oeuf Aug 28, 2010 06:17 PM

                                                                                          oakjoan, i read your post earlier so I made this for lunch. It was just delicious, so fresh and flavorful. I squeezed on some fresh lemon and will add kalamata olives when I have it again for breakfast tomorrow. Great recipe, thank you!

                                                                                        3. re: luckyfatima
                                                                                          nsenada Aug 26, 2010 11:01 AM

                                                                                          Armenian (Anatolian) cuisine has a number of dishes that rely on it heavily. My favorite is Sou Boereg, which is basically like a lasagna that's baked until crispy on top, with a filling consisting of a large amount of parsley, cheese (I use muenster), and eggs. The cooked parsley flavor in this amazing.

                                                                                          1. re: nsenada
                                                                                            ChristinaMason Aug 26, 2010 08:18 PM

                                                                                            Have a recipe to share, perchance? Sounds great.

                                                                                            1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                              alkapal Aug 27, 2010 05:38 AM

                                                                                              christina, here is nsenada's recipe from a 2006 thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/353544

                                                                                            2. re: nsenada
                                                                                              alkapal Aug 27, 2010 05:37 AM

                                                                                              nsenada, that's a really interesting combination. does armenian cuisine use lots of parsley? also, instead of muenster (which i assume is a substitute), what would be the "authentic" cheese in the dish?

                                                                                              hey, look at this! nsenada, it CITES your chowhound thread!


                                                                                              Boeregs are a popular snack and fast food, often served as appetizer. These are savory pies made with phyllo pastry and stuffed with cheese ("banirov boereg", from Armenian: "banir" for cheese) or spinach (similar to spanakopita in Greek cuisine). "Sou boereg" ("su boeregi", or "water burek", in Turkish cuisine) is a lasagna-style dish with sheets of phyllo pastry briefly boiled in a large pan before being spread with fillings. ["Sou boereg" recipe on [http://www.chowhound.com/topics/353544 ChowHound] ] "Misov boereg" is a bread roll (not phyllo pastry) stuffed with ground meat (similar to Russian pirozhki). "Tepsi boereg".Fact|date=August 2008"" http://en.academic.ru/dic.nsf/enwiki/...

                                                                                              1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                nsenada Aug 27, 2010 05:52 AM

                                                                                                On the parsley, yes, my grandma had tons of it growing, and it seemed to be in everything, mixed with bulghur, in yoghurt and chicken stock soups, losh kebab, etc. There is some variation in Armenian cuisine, and what I'm familiar with comes out of Anatolia, or Eastern Turkey, and seemed to be very meat and dairy centric. Hummus was not really eaten, and looked upon as "Syrian," though we called pita bread "Syrian bread," non-pejoratively. I'd really like to research where the cuisine came from originally, some of the dishes are no doubt ancient.

                                                                                                On the cheese front, I suspect it was muenster because my grandmother got a tremendous deal from the supermarket on the 2-ton block. I remember finding out the name of the "authentic" cheese at one point, but haven't delved into it too far - the dish is such a pain in the $&^ to make that if it wasn't as good, I'd be pretty ticked off.

                                                                                                1. re: nsenada
                                                                                                  alkapal Aug 27, 2010 06:11 AM

                                                                                                  it looked like amazon has several books on armenian cuisine.....

                                                                                                  that link i posted has some info on influences on the cuisine.

                                                                                                2. re: alkapal
                                                                                                  nsenada Aug 27, 2010 07:12 AM

                                                                                                  Awesome - chowhound is a primary source now! One of these days I'm going to see if I can get into that Schlesinger library at Harvard and see if they have any good materials on this.

                                                                                                  1. re: nsenada
                                                                                                    alkapal Aug 27, 2010 07:17 AM

                                                                                                    you might post a new thread asking about resources in print and online for your quest re armenian cuisine.

                                                                                                    i recall a thread way back that had some great tips on accessing online databases for food/cuisine.

                                                                                              2. re: luckyfatima
                                                                                                oakjoan Dec 31, 2010 01:06 PM

                                                                                                I can taste parsley as well....as long as it's flat-leaf. I don't think the curly stuff has any taste at all, and I NEVER buy it.

                                                                                              3. re: Harters
                                                                                                buttertart Aug 26, 2010 09:58 AM

                                                                                                On potatoes: especially with butter and lemon juice.

                                                                                              4. epabella Aug 23, 2010 03:00 AM

                                                                                                fresh or dried, try using it in stock with lemon rind and various fungi - you'll be surprised at the fragrance it will impart.

                                                                                                1. k
                                                                                                  Krislady Aug 23, 2010 02:53 AM

                                                                                                  Are you using fresh or dried parsley? You've just described dried parsley perfectly!

                                                                                                  Fresh, though, that's a whole different story - I find it herby, kind of peppery. I don't know that I care for it on its own, but as part of the whole, it lends a fresh, green (in a good way!) flavor. I love a handful, chopped finely, in meatballs, myself.

                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: Krislady
                                                                                                    ChristinaMason Aug 23, 2010 07:40 AM

                                                                                                    I'm with you. This is like asking what good "air" is. It just is!

                                                                                                    I use a lot of parsley in my cooking.

                                                                                                    1. re: Krislady
                                                                                                      ZenSojourner Aug 23, 2010 09:05 AM


                                                                                                      1. re: Krislady
                                                                                                        senior1 Aug 26, 2010 03:13 PM

                                                                                                        I like using parsley, but waste an awful lot of those big bunches. I've found Freeze-Dried containers kept in the fridge or freezer is a perfect substitute. Never would know the difference,

                                                                                                        1. re: Krislady
                                                                                                          EWSflash Dec 31, 2010 04:24 PM


                                                                                                          I eat it like celery (only no cream cheese in the little tiny stem ridge)

                                                                                                          1. re: EWSflash
                                                                                                            c oliver Jan 1, 2011 10:31 AM

                                                                                                            What a great mental picture.

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