by Lee Wyatt
(last updated April 29, 2016)
If you have never heard of the spice called bergamot, don't worry. The reason for this is that chances are you have heard of it by a different name, called scarlet sage. In fact, this spice is actually more of an herb since it is also a flower. Known by the scientific name Mondara didyma, this flower is frequently found along the edges of fields and woods. In fact, it is such a beautiful flower with its mauve, pink, or blue petals that many people have taken to growing it in their gardens without realizing that it can be used in the kitchen.
Bergamot is best known as one of the primary ingredients in Oswego tea, a delicious beverage that takes its name from another of the many nicknames for this wonderful flower. Another great use that some people put this great plant to use for is attracting bees as a pollinator in their garden, since bees absolutely love it; this give rise to yet another of its names, bee balm. This flower also goes great in salads, and the leaves have a taste that is reminiscent of sage combined with a hint of rosemary.
Borage, or Borago officinalis, is another great herb to grow in your garden if you are interested. The reason for this is that it is extremely easy to grow, and its blue blossoms will look great next to other flowers and herbs. In times past, this flower was often used as a home remedy to cure such things as comforting a troubled heart, and increasing joy. According to some folklore, this herb is also a great way to fend off melancholy and hypochondria. Basically, it can used to help calm people down similar to Chamomile tea.
If used by themselves, the leaves will have a light cucumber taste. Because of their beauty, the blue star shaped flowers have long been a favorite of bakers. By crystallizing the flower with sugar, you can add a natural elegance to almost any cake, custard, or even ice creams. Because of its beautiful scent, borage is also heavily used in aromatherapy as an additive for scented baths and essential oils. When used in bath's, borage is supposed to help strengthen your body, while also beautifying the skin.
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