Angelica in our A-Z - Cooking Index
Angelica is a robust, aromatic, short-lived perennial with thick, hollow stems and long-stalked, deeply divided leaves, with tiny green-white flowers appearing, followed by ovate ridged seeds.
All parts of Angelica are used, roots, seeds stems and leaves. The roots and stems contain an essential oil that has a licorice flavour used to flavour Benedictine, Chartreuse and Vermouth. The oil is also used in perfumery. The leafstalks which resemble celery are sometimes used as a vegetable. The seeds are used in cookies and sweets. The stems can be candied and used as in cookie and cake decorating. Young leaves can be added to fruit or leaf salads. The small flowers which should be picked early in the spring taste as good as they smell and are good in fruit salads and cream cheese. Because it reduces acidity, it can be used as a flavouring for rhubarb, orange marmalade, sorbets and fruit syrups.
It is found in the moist mountain ravines, meadows, and coastal regions of northern Europe and Asia, and is widely cultivated.
According to one legend, (European-angelica) Angelica was revealed in a dream by an angel to cure the plague. All parts of the plant were believed effective against evil spirits and witchcraft.