Marjoram in our A-Z - Cooking Index
Marjoram is the graygreen leaf of Majorana hortensis, a low growing member of the mint family. It is often mistaken for oregano, although they are not the same plant.
Crush in your hand or with a mortar and pestle before using. Marjoram's mellow taste and enticing fragrance make it compatible with a wide variety of foods. It won't overpower: start with 1/2 teaspoon per 4 servings. Marjoram Complements lamb dishes, as well as beef and veal. Marjoram blends well with parsley, dill, basil, or thyme. Try it in soups or stews.
Marjoram has a delicate, sweet, pleasant flavor with a slightly bitter undertone.
Marjoram is native to Europe and grows wild on dry sunny slopes, hedge banks, roadsides and in grassland, usually on lime-rich soils. It is locally common in England and Wales but rarer farther north. It is also cultivated commercially in many countries but most supplies are still collected from the wild in the Mediterranean region. It is grown on a small scale in Britain. Marjoram used to be considered a remedy for all manner of complaints and was also a strewing herb. The plant is widely used as a culinary herb and remains a favourite herbal remedy.
Greeks and Romans, looked on it as a symbol of happiness. It was said that if marjoram grew on the grave of a dead person, he would enjoy eternal bliss.