Prunella Vulgaris — Edible Herbs in Your Home Kitchen

Prunella Vulgaris
Prunella vulgaris is also known as the common self-heal, purple heal-all, and hedge woundwort. It is a perennial herbaceous plant that is native to Europe but has since spread to other areas of the world. The Prunella vulgaris plant commonly appears in fields and hedgerows, and it has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries.

Self-heal can be used fresh or dried in a home kitchen to add an herbal dimension to vinegars or oils, as well as being made into tea to address a variety of conditions. Read on to discover how you can use this herb in your home kitchen…

What Does this Herb Taste Like?

As with many herbs, the exact flavour of Prunella vulgaris will vary depending on the growing conditions and the part of the plant you use. In general, however, Prunella vulgaris will have a mildly bitter flavour that can be described as ‘herby’, ‘woodsy’, or ‘minty’.

When dried, self-heal will have a stronger, more pungent flavour that some people may find unpleasantly bitter. If you are using fresh Prunella vulgaris, it is best to keep the quantities low when using the herb in cooking. If using dried Prunella vulgaris, the flavour will be much stronger, so you can use more of the herb in your creations.

How to Dry the Prunella Vulgaris Herb

Self-heal is an easy herb to dry at home. The best time to harvest the plant is once flowering is finished and the leaves have turned a dark shade of green. Cut the stems of the Prunella vulgaris plant just above the first set of leaves, making sure not to damage the buds at the base of the plant. Hang the stems to dry in a well-ventilated room away from direct sunlight. The leaves will be dry enough to store in an airtight container after 2–3 weeks.

How to Use Prunella Vulgaris in Vinegar

Prunella vulgaris vinegar adds a wonderful herbal kick to both sweet and savory dishes. To make this vinegar, place 50g of dried Prunella vulgaris in a jar with 500ml of apple cider vinegar, and leave the jar in a warm place for around 2 weeks. Once the herb is fully infused in the vinegar, strain the herbs and store the vinegar in a sealed jar. You can use this vinegar as a marinade for meat and fish, as a dipping sauce, or drizzled over roasted vegetables.

How to Use this Herb for Tea

To make a herbal tea with Prunella vulgaris, place 1–2 teaspoons of dried herb in a teapot, and pour boiling water over the herbs. Allow the teapot to sit for around 5 minutes, then strain the liquid and serve. Prunella vulgaris tea is best consumed without milk or sugar. Prunella vulgaris tea can be used to address a variety of conditions, including coughs, colds, flu, and fevers, as well as helping with digestive issues and respiratory problems.

How to Use this Herb as an Essential Oil

Prunella vulgaris essential oil is a highly concentrated product that should be used carefully. Place 2–3 teaspoons of dried Prunella vulgaris in a jar with 50ml of a carrier oil such as sweet almond or jojoba oil, and leave the jar in a warm place for 1–2 weeks.

Once the essential oil has formed, strain the herbs and store the product in a dark glass bottle. Prunella vulgaris essential oil can be applied topically to treat insect bites, skin rashes, and acne. It can also be used to make an inhaler for respiratory conditions.

Final Words

Prunella vulgaris is an incredibly useful herb that can be used in a variety of ways in the kitchen. The herb is best harvested in late summer, and it can be used fresh or dried. When dried, the herb can be used to make herbal vinegar and tea, or as an essential oil. Prunella vulgaris is a vitamin and mineral-rich herb that can be used to address a variety of health issues when used in the home kitchen.

*NOTICE: Articles in this publication are not meant to be used as a guide for medical treatment. These articles gather existing information about herbs, herbal remedies, and mushrooms for health and consumption. Hundreds of years of use of herbs for healing is gathered and published to help people to select alternative solutions to health conditions or to live a more healthy lifestyle.

Allergies and existing conditions can be exacerbated by herbs or mushrooms, so care must be taken in using remedies in these articles. Consult a physician or dietician if desired before using herbal remedies discussed here.**

  • Note: Some links to products or services in this article may be affiliate links and result in income to the author.

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