Thymus vulgaris L.

Thyme is a shrub of the mint family. The herb grows up to 40 centimetres tall, has woody branches and bears numerous pink to lilac-coloured flowers in springtime. Its small leaves are greyish-green and exude an intense fragrance. The name thyme comes from the Greek word “thymos“ meaning courage, in reference to the fortifying effect of the plant.

Countries of origin

Southern Europe, Eastern Europe, England, Germany, Morocco, North America
Thyme is native to the western Mediterranean. Benedictine monks introduced it to Northern Europe. Today, it also grows in Germany, adding its tangy, aromatic fragrance to numerous fields and meadows.

Flavour and aroma

Thyme has a strong aroma and tangy, bitter flavour. Beef and mutton, vegetables, pâté, soups, sauces and sausage spice blends Thyme is a Mediterranean spice that harmonises particularly well with dishes in that style. It is a perfect match for vegetables like zucchini, tomato and eggplant. A master in the use of thyme as a culinary herb is the Provence region of France, where it is an ingredient in a wide variety of foods, from herb roasts, rich vol-au-vent fillings and gherkins, all the way to herb cheeses. Thyme pairs well with other spices, such as bay leaf, nutmeg, rosemary and sage. Raw vegetables, vegetable soups, bean dishes, hearty meat stocks, herb sauces, omelettes, crab dishes and fresh mussels also acquire a Mediterranean flavour note from thyme. Several popular herb liqueurs are based on the typical thyme flavour.

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