Is celery closely related to coriander

Prof. Dr. Karl Knobloch

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Collegium Alexandrinum

from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg

- Science for the public -

Summer semester 2008

Martius Pharmacognosy Collection:

"Anise, fennel, coriander, caraway - fruits of the umbelliferae"

Guided tour on

Location: Institute for Pharmacy and Food Chemistry, Schuhstrasse 19



The aromatic plants among the umbellifers form essential oils in all of their plant parts. Depending on the required application, either the fresh herb (e.g. for dill and parsley) or the roots (e.g. for celery) or, and especially often - because of their long shelf life and easy transportability - the fruits ("grains") are used.

The flavors of these fruits are simple, small molecules of their essential oils. But they have very considerable, valuable physiological-biochemical effects. Its use as a remedy, spice or cosmetic, which goes back a long way, was based on experience and knowledge. - Charlemagne already has him capitulare de villis1000 years ago the cultivation of such umbels was prescribed in his farms. They became an integral part of the medieval herbal books and, like their essential oils, were already included in the early pharmacopoeias.

In the fruits of the umbelliferae, the reactive, aggressive essential oil is naturally carefully secreted in isolated, elongated oil containers ("welts") to protect the surrounding living tissue. Therefore, it is only when the fruits are rubbed that they produce their full aroma.

The plump ones anise- Fissures are often used to flavor bread, baked goods, canned fruits, sugar confectionery and alcohol preparations, among other things. The same applies to fennel and also for Caraway seed. But one uses fennel preferably in herbal teas for colds and gastrointestinal upset.

The spherical ones coriander-Fruits are often found in curry mixes, are popular in spiced bread, in speculoos and Printen; they also season some sausage products.

The elongated partial fruits of the Caraway seed- Perennials are particularly widespread in Europe. Traditionally, they season bread, potatoes, sauerkraut, cheese preparations, etc. The closely related one Cumin is also a popular cheese spice.

The many beneficial applications are only hinted at. - It is also worth mentioning and noting that in ancient Egypt there were admirable deceased with Caraway seedEmbalmed preparations and mummified them with them.

The Martius collection and its history

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last changed on April 20, 2008

Photo: Prof. Dr. Karl Knobloch