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Lemon Balm Vs. Lemon Verbena In The Fridge

Lemon Balm Vs. Lemon Verbena: A Comparison

Introduction to Lemon Balm and Lemon Verbena

Lemon balm and lemon verbena are two herbs that pack a punch in both the kitchen and the medicine cabinet. They might seem similar, but they each bring their own unique flair.

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis) is a perennial herb from the mint family. It has heart-shaped leaves and gives off a mild lemon scent. You’ll find it in teas, salads, and desserts. It’s also a go-to for calming herbal remedies.

Lemon Verbena (Aloysia citrodora) is a deciduous shrub with long, narrow leaves. It has a strong, citrusy aroma. Lemon verbena is a favorite in teas, marinades, and desserts, thanks to its intense flavor.

Flavor Profile and Aroma

Knowing the flavor and aroma of lemon balm and lemon verbena can help you use them better in cooking and other stuff.

Herb Flavor Aroma
Lemon Balm Mild, lemony, slightly sweet Subtle lemon
Lemon Verbena Strong, citrusy, lemony Intense citrus

Lemon balm has a gentle, lemon-like taste with a touch of sweetness. Its aroma is subtle, perfect for dishes needing a light lemon flavor.

Lemon verbena, on the other hand, has a bold, citrusy taste with a strong lemon scent. Its intense aroma and flavor make it great for recipes needing a strong citrus kick.

For more tips on storing herbs and their differences, check out our articles on leek Vs. scallion in the fridge and black-eyed peas Vs. chickpeas in the fridge.

Buying and Storing

Picking Fresh Lemon Balm

When buying fresh lemon balm, look for bright green leaves without any discoloration or wilting. The leaves should be firm and smell pleasantly lemony. Avoid any bunches with yellow or brown leaves, as they might be old or spoiled.

Picking Fresh Lemon Verbena

For fresh lemon verbena, choose sprigs with vibrant green leaves free from blemishes. The leaves should be firm and aromatic, giving off a strong lemon fragrance. Steer clear of any bunches with wilted or discolored leaves, which can signal poor quality.

Storing Lemon Balm in the Fridge

To keep lemon balm fresh in the fridge, follow these steps:

  1. Rinse the leaves gently under cold water and pat them dry with a paper towel.
  2. Wrap the lemon balm in a damp paper towel.
  3. Place the wrapped herb in a resealable plastic bag or an airtight container.
  4. Store in the crisper drawer of your fridge.
Herb Refrigerator Storage Duration
Lemon Balm Up to 1 week

For longer storage, you can freeze lemon balm. Chop the leaves and place them in ice cube trays with a bit of water. Once frozen, transfer the cubes to a freezer bag.

Storing Lemon Verbena in the Fridge

To store lemon verbena in the fridge, use this method:

  1. Rinse the sprigs under cold water and dry them with a paper towel.
  2. Wrap the lemon verbena in a slightly damp paper towel.
  3. Place the wrapped herb in a resealable plastic bag or an airtight container.
  4. Store in the crisper drawer of your fridge.
Herb Refrigerator Storage Duration
Lemon Verbena Up to 1 week

For extended storage, lemon verbena can also be frozen. Chop the leaves and freeze them in ice cube trays with water. Once frozen, transfer the cubes to a freezer bag.

For more on storing herbs and veggies in the fridge, check out our comparisons like green beans Vs. string beans in the fridge and leek Vs. scallion in the fridge.

Culinary Uses

Lemon balm and lemon verbena each bring unique flavors and aromas to your dishes. Knowing how to cook with these herbs can enhance your culinary creations.

Cooking with Lemon Balm

Lemon balm, with its mild lemony fragrance and hint of mint, is versatile in the kitchen. You can use it fresh or dried, depending on your recipe.

  1. Salads: Fresh lemon balm leaves add a refreshing zest to green salads and fruit salads.
  2. Teas: Steep lemon balm leaves in hot water for a calming herbal tea.
  3. Sauces: Incorporate lemon balm into sauces for fish or poultry to add a subtle citrus flavor.
  4. Desserts: Use lemon balm to flavor sorbets, ice creams, and baked goods.
Use Case Fresh Lemon Balm (g) Dried Lemon Balm (g)
Salad 10 2
Tea 5 1
Sauce 15 3
Dessert 8 1.5

Explore more ways to incorporate lemon balm in your cooking by visiting our article on lemongrass Vs. lemon verbena in the fridge.

Cooking with Lemon Verbena

Lemon verbena offers a stronger lemon scent and flavor compared to lemon balm, making it a favorite in both savory and sweet dishes.

  1. Marinades: Use lemon verbena in marinades for chicken, pork, or fish.
  2. Infusions: Infuse lemon verbena in oils or vinegars for a citrusy kick.
  3. Beverages: Add lemon verbena to cocktails, lemonades, or even plain water for a refreshing twist.
  4. Desserts: Enhance custards, cakes, and jams with the vibrant flavor of lemon verbena.
Use Case Fresh Lemon Verbena (g) Dried Lemon Verbena (g)
Marinades 12 2.5
Infusions 6 1.2
Beverages 7 1.5
Desserts 10 2

For more culinary inspiration, you can also read about cooking with lemon balm and discover additional culinary uses for lemon verbena.

Incorporating these herbs into your dishes can elevate the flavors and aromas, making your culinary creations stand out. Whether you prefer the gentle note of lemon balm or the bold essence of lemon verbena, both herbs have their unique place in the kitchen.

Health Benefits

Health Benefits of Lemon Balm

Lemon balm offers several health advantages, making it a popular choice among those who prioritize wellness. Known for its calming properties, lemon balm can help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. It is often used to alleviate stress and improve mood.

Additionally, lemon balm has been found to aid in digestive health. It can help soothe indigestion and relieve symptoms like bloating and discomfort. This herb is also known for its antiviral properties, which can help in fighting off certain infections.

Health Benefit Description
Anxiety Reduction Helps in reducing stress and promoting relaxation
Digestive Aid Alleviates indigestion and bloating
Antiviral Properties Fights off certain infections

For more information on herbs and their health benefits, you may find our comparison of lovage Vs. celery in the fridge insightful.

Health Benefits of Lemon Verbena

Lemon verbena is another herb with a range of health benefits. It is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce pain and swelling. This makes it beneficial for those dealing with conditions like arthritis.

Lemon verbena is also recognized for its antioxidant properties. Antioxidants help to protect the body from damage caused by free radicals, thus promoting overall health and longevity. Additionally, this herb can aid in digestion and is often used to soothe digestive issues.

Health Benefit Description
Anti-inflammatory Reduces pain and swelling
Antioxidant Properties Protects the body from free radical damage
Digestive Aid Soothes digestive issues

For further comparisons between similar herbs, check out our article on lemongrass Vs. lemon verbena in the fridge.

Side Effects and Precautions

Potential Side Effects of Lemon Balm

Lemon balm is widely used for its soothing properties, but it may pose certain side effects and precautions you should be aware of.

Possible Side Effects:

  • Drowsiness: It can cause drowsiness, especially when combined with other sedative medications.
  • Allergic Reactions: Some individuals may experience allergic reactions such as itching or swelling.
  • Gastrointestinal Issues: In rare cases, it might lead to nausea or stomach pain.

Who Should Avoid Lemon Balm:

  • Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women: It's best to consult a healthcare provider before using lemon balm during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
  • Individuals with Thyroid Disorders: It may interfere with thyroid medications and function.

Potential Side Effects of Lemon Verbena

Lemon verbena is another popular herb with its own set of benefits and precautions.

Possible Side Effects:

  • Skin Irritation: Direct contact may cause skin irritation or dermatitis in some individuals.
  • Allergic Reactions: Can trigger allergic reactions such as rash, itching, or difficulty breathing.
  • Gastrointestinal Distress: Overconsumption can lead to stomach cramps or nausea.

Who Should Avoid Lemon Verbena:

  • Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women: It's advisable to avoid using lemon verbena during pregnancy or while breastfeeding without medical advice.
  • Kidney Conditions: Those with kidney disorders should be cautious, as it might aggravate the condition.

Understanding the potential side effects and precautions can help you make informed decisions when using these herbs. For more comparisons of herbs and veggies, check out our articles on lemongrass Vs. lemon verbena in the fridge and ginger Vs. galangal in the fridge.

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