An increasing number of medicinal products for digestive problems can be found on the market. These mainly consist of caraway and peppermint oil or extract.
Always carrying caraway on you is cheaper and preventative, especially if you have to eat out. Almost every salad is easier to digest if you sprinkle some caraway seeds on it. It is, of course, particularly digestible when served with all types of cabbage and pulses, and it is a special treat when sprinkled on raw beetroot, carrot, and celery salads. Caraway also goes well with cheese and potatoes. If you love cheese fondue, you can do without the schnapps afterwards with caraway, or you can go straight for caraway schnapps (a popular spirit, especially in northern Germany). This tangy spice can also be used in sauces, soups, bread, and savoury cakes and pastries.
Caraway seeds are rich in fibre and have a healing effect on the stomach and intestines. They also contain antioxidative flavonoids, valuable fatty acids and proteins. The essential oils in caraway therefore have an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effect. The fact that caraway stimulates circulation is less well-known. Caraway oil also makes a pleasant liniment for tension headaches. Caraway tea can also be beneficial for small children (add two teaspoons of ground caraway to a pot. Pour 500 ml of hot water into the pot and let the tea steep, covered for ten minutes).
If you do not like the taste of caraway, you can mix caraway powder with olive oil and drink peppermint tea for mild stomach/intestinal complaints. If caraway is used as a spice in normal quantities, there are no side effects. In the worst-case scenario, the use of high doses over a long period can lead to skin irritation. Caraway oil should also not be used as an inhalant.
Scientists at the University of Würzburg voted caraway the medicinal plant of 2016, and caraway has been approved as a medicinal plant by the Committee on Herbal Medicinal Products of the European Medicines Agency.
During excavations of pile dwellings, caraway fruits were found that date back to 3000 BC. Their use in the kitchen can be traced back to culinary texts that were probably written in the 3rd century AD.
Caraway is cultivated as a spice plant. In 2002, caraway was cultivated on about 450 hectares of land in Germany. The main cultivation areas are Egypt, the Netherlands, and Eastern Europe. When cultivating caraway, loamy soils are preferable to sandy soils because they are more productive.
No time to cook?
Mix unsweetened spelt rusk, hummus and cornichons with caraway seeds.
Spread hummus on the rusks, chop the cornichons, place them on top, and sprinkle with caraway seeds.
A carrot soup prepared the night before goes well with the following recipe:
Wash, peel and chop 1 kg of carrots – peel and chop ginger (one tablespoon) – sauté a red onion with some whisky and olive oil – add 1 – 1.5 litres of Morga diluted stock, add the carrots and ginger, cook until soft and mix – if you like, mix in half a banana – stir in two tablespoons of parsley and two tablespoons of chives (freeze-dried), two heaped teaspoons of mild or madras curry powder, and some chilli peppers to taste – depending on the consistency, add some more diluted stock and 100 ml of freshly squeezed orange juice – bring to boil briefly together with two or three bay leaves, season to taste and fold in a bit of coconut cream – serve with a garnish of fresh parsley and chives.
If you like, add a few caraway seeds…