Caraway, also called Persian cumin, is a plant native to Europe, Asia and North America that is thought to have originated with the ancient Arabs. The stem of caraway grows up to 2 feet high, and has small white flowers that blossom in June. The fruits, which are mistakenly called seeds, release an aromatic scent when bruised and are pleasant to eat.
Commonly used for its healing purposes, caraway is used in cooking because of its aroma and flavor.
Benefits and Uses of Caraway
Though it is used as a flavor-enhancing ingredient in dishes, caraway has so much more to offer. It has medicinal properties that aid with digestive problems that have to do with heartburn, loss of appetite, gas and bloating.
The oil is used to kill bacteria in the body, alleviate constipation and improve urine control. In menstruating women, the oil helps reduce menstrual cramps; for nursing moms, the oil helps increase the flow of milk.
Some use caraway as a mouthwash. Especially because it has a nice scent, caraway is incorporated and used as a fragrance in many toothpaste and soap brands. Others rub the oil onto their skins to improve blood circulation.
There is some evidence that supports caraway can help alleviate spasms in the stomach. Caraway is most frequently used, when in conjunction with other ingredients, to relieve stomach problems that involve vomiting, nausea, and cramps.
How to Use
Caraway fruits/seeds and caraway oils are easily purchased from any supermarket or therapeutic store. A few drops of this aromatic oil can be used in massages for relaxation. For an upset stomach, add 1 to 4 drops of oil onto a teaspoon of water for fast relief.
You can add caraway fruit to almost any dish to enhance flavor, cooked or uncooked. Uncooked caraway can be used as a topping on salads and desserts. Adding the fruit to a meal cooking on the stove will immediately enhance that dish’s flavor and taste.