Asafoetida - Asafetida

Quick Notes:

What is Asafoetida - Asafetida?

Asafoetida-Asafetida (other names: Angedan, Devil’s Dung, Stinking Gum, Stink Finger, Food of the Gods, Hing, Perungayam) is the milky resin from a giant garden fennel. It has a fetid, strong pungent smell that disappears during the cooking process leaving food flavored nicely. Asafoetida is a possible flavor substitute for onions and garlic, especially if an allergy, or religious observance is required (abstaining from onions and garlic - e.g., Jainism, Vaishnavism, Brahmins, Hindu satvik, Shojin-ryori Buddhist).

Odor and flavor of Asafoetida becomes more desirable (similar to sauteed onions and garlic) after heating it in oil, butter or ghee.

Pictures of Asafoetida - Asafetida:

What is the Origin of Asafoetida - Asafetida?

It is indigenous to Afghanistan, Iran, and northern India.  Its name is a Persian (aza meaning resin) - Latin (foetida meaning sulfuric) blend.  Plants were taken to Rome by Alexander the Great after he invaded Asia.

Asafoetida - Asafetida is Good for These Foods:

This herb is used primarily to flavor Indian and Middle Eastern cuisines, especially vegetarian.  Used in Afghanistan for dried meat preparations, and as a seasoning for meatballs in Iran.  Asafoetida is great added to any bean or pea dishes.  No need for store-bought gas relief meds.

It is a good flavoring for legumes, lentils, vegetables, and fish. Use just a pinch (size of a pea); like saffron spice, a little can go a long way.

Keep small quantities of asafoetida, usually in powder form, and replace within about 6 months. 

What Are The Health Benefits of This Herb?

Asafoetida has been eaten to alleviate cold symptoms, and to reduce flatulence and stomach gas.  Digestive aid.  Has anti-inflammatory properties, natural blood thinners, and may help reduce blood pressure.  Has been used in folk medicine for colds by tying some of the resin in cloth around the neck. 

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