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blog by: El Paraje
Berchules, Granada, Spain

30 March 2010

Borage or Borago Officinalis

Borage is an annual herb that at this moment flowers abundantly along the Río Cádiar and probably at many other places in the Alpujarras which are humid enough and not higher than 1,300 metres. The borage of the forget-me-not- family or Boraginaceae originated in Syria and is a good honey flower. Nowadays the commercial cultivation of this starflower is mainly as an oilseed, although in former days it was cultivated for medicinal (which explains the indication ´officinalis´) and culinary uses. As a fresh vegetable, borage, with a cucumber like taste, is often used in salads or as a garnish. The flower has a sweet honey-like taste and is sometimes used to decorate desserts. There are many countries where borage is used in cooking, which sounds very tempting to try something out. Nevertheless, when we read on on wikipedia, it says that the leaves and flowers have been found to contain small amounts of the liver-toxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids. So we prefer not to take any risks and enjoy just the beauty of the gentian-blue flowers.

Borago officinalis along the Río Cádiar - photo: casa rural El Paraje
related keywords: borraja, bernagie, komkommerkruid, bourrache officinale, Boretsch, Borretch, Gurkenkraut

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