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Botanical Name : Artemisia dracunculus
Species: A. dracunculus
Common Names: Tarragon.
Other names: Dragon’s wort, Herbaceous Sagewort, Pinon Wormwood, Wild Tarragon
Informal names for distinguishing the variations include “French tarragon” (best for culinary use), “Russian tarragon” (typically better than wild tarragon but not as good as so-called French tarragon for culinary use), and “wild tarragon” (covers various states).
Habitat : Tarragon is found natively in a number of areas of the Northern Hemisphere.It originates from cetral Asia.
Tarragon is a perennial herb .It grows to 120–150 cm tall, with slender branched stems. The leaves are lanceolate, 2–8 cm long and 2–10 mm broad, glossy green, with an entire margin. The flowers are produced in small capitulae 2–4 mm diameter, each capitulum containing up to 40 yellow or greenish-yellow florets. French tarragon, however, seldom produces any flowers (or seeds). Some tarragon plants produce seeds that are generally only sterile. Others produce viable seeds. Tarragon has rhizomatous roots and it readily reproduces from the rhizomes.
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Tarragon is cultivated for use of the leaves as an aromatic culinary herb. In some other sub-species, the characteristic aroma is largely absent.
Tarragon is one of the four fines herbes of French cooking, and is particularly suitable for chicken, fish and egg dishes. Tarragon is the main flavoring component of Béarnaise sauce. Fresh, lightly bruised sprigs of tarragon are steeped in vinegar to produce tarragon vinegar.
Tarragon is used to flavor a popular carbonated soft drink in the countries of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia and, by extension, Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. The drink, named Tarhun , is made out of sugary tarragon concentrate and colored bright green.
In Slovenia, tarragon is used in a variation of the traditional nut roll sweet cake, called potica. In Hungary a popular kind of chicken soup is flavored with tarragon.
cis-Pellitorin, an isobutyramide eliciting a pungent taste, has been isolated from Tarragon plant
Parts used: The fresh or dried leaves and roots.
Chemical Constituents: A. dracunculus oil contained predominantly phenylpropanoids such as methyl chavicol (16.2%) and methyl eugenol (35.8%). Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry analysis of the essential oil revealed the presence of trans-anethole (21.1%), trans-ocimene (20.6%), limonene (12.4%), pinene (5.1%), allo-ocimene (4.8%), methyl eugenol (2.2%), -pinene (0.8%), terpinolene (0.5%), bornyl acetate (0.5%) and bicyclogermacrene (0.5%) as the main components.
Tarragon has been used medicinally since antiquity. Traditionally, Tarragon has been used to treat tootaches, as a mild sedative, heart disease prevention aid and as an antidote for snakebites. Nowadays it is used in treatments of digestive complaints: it relieves stomach cramps, promotes appetite and production of bile. Tarragon is also used to promote menstruation, as a mild sedative and as a substitute for salt for people with high blood pressure. The root can ce used in cases of aching teeth.
Tarragon has an aromatic property reminiscent of anise, due to the presence of estragole, a known carcinogen and teratogen in mice. The European Union investigation revealed that the danger of estragole is minimal even at 100–1,000 times the typical consumption seen in humans. Estragole concentration in fresh tarragon leaves is about 2900 mg/kg.
Russian Tarragon is eaten in Persia to induce appetite.
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider