French tarragon herb, is a popular culinary herb used as flavoring agent. This aromatic perennial growing herb is rich in phytonutrients as well antioxidants that help promote health and prevent diseases.
The main essential oils in tarragon are estragole (methyl chavicol), cineol, ocimene and phellandrene.
Fresh tarragon herb is one of the highest antioxidant value food sources among the common herbs. Scientific studies suggest that poly-phenolic compounds in this herb help lower blood-sugar levels. Laboratory studies on tarragon extract shows certain compounds in them inhibit platelet activation. It, thus, helps prevent clot formation inside tiny blood vessels of heart and brain protecting from heart attack, and stroke.
The herb is very rich source of vitamins such as vitamin-C, vitamin-A as well as B-complex group of vitamins such as folates, pyridoxine, niacin, riboflavin, etc., that function as antioxidant as well as co-factors for enzymes in the metabolism.
Tarragon is a notably excellent source of minerals like calcium, manganese, iron, magnesium, copper, potassium, and zinc. Manganese is utilized by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Iron is essential for cellular respiration (co-factors for cytochrome-oxidase enzyme) and blood cell production.
Tarragon herb has been used in various traditional medicines for stimulating the appetite and as a remedy for anorexia, dyspepsia, flatulence, and hiccups.
The essential oil, eugenol in the herb has been in therapeutic use in dentistry as a local-anesthetic and antiseptic for toothache complaints.
Tarragon tea may help cure insomnia.
French tarragon a half hardy perennial herb, but frost tender.
It is propagated by division, or from cuttings. Requires a sunny or partial shade sheltered position with well drained soil. Keep well watered in dry weather. In autumn, mulch plants with a thick layer of straw or similar, to protect it over the winter. Tarragon prefers well-drained soil which is not too high in nutrients.
Tarragon goes well with fish, pork, beef, poultry, game, potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, and most vegetables. Tarragon can be used in cream sauces, herbed butters and vinegars, soups, sour creams, and yogurt. It can be overpowering in large amounts