Parsley (Petroselinum Crispum) is a bright green, biennial herb that is very common in Middle Eastern, European, and American cooking. Evidence suggests it has been cultivated as early as the third century BC both by the Romans and the Greeks who used it to garnish their foods. It is used for its leaf in much the same way as coriander, although it has a milder flavor. Two forms of parsley are used as herbs: curly leaf and Italian or flat leaf. Here in Cyprus, we grow nearly 100% flat leaf parsley and we strongly believe that it possesses a much stronger flavor than its curly relative.
In parts of Europe, and particularly in West Asia, many foods are served with chopped parsley sprinkled on top. Parsley is essential to several West Asian salads, especially used in, tabbouleh which is the national dish of Lebanon. In Southern and Central Europe, parsley is used to garnish fish, soups, sauces, salads and prepared food adding both aroma and color.
Parsley is also valued as a breath-freshener, due to its high concentration of chlorophyll and is often suggested as a mouth freshener following consumption of garlic. It is high in vitamins A and C, and contains iron, iodine, and copper.
Fresh parsley possesses a tonic action and it’s chiefly used for its diuretic properties offering also a great service to the proper functioning of the kidneys. The dried leaves are used for the same purpose even though they loose much of their aroma.
A fluid extract is prepared from both root and seeds. The extract made from the root acts more readily on the kidneys than that from other parts of the herb. The oil extracted from the seeds, the Apiol, is considered as a natural medicine to terminate pregnancies as it facilitates abortion.
Production and Packing:
It is grown in Cyprus throughout the year but for commercial (export) purposes volumes and quality are best attained during the months of November –May. Flat leaf parsley is readily available while the curly variety may be grown upon customer demand. Fresh parsley is usually harvested in bunches of 180-220 grms washed and pre-cooled before packing. Produce is packed either loose or in liner bags in cartons boxes unless demanded otherwise by the customer and shipped to destination markets normally within 24hrs from harvest.