- Regular price
- Regular price
- Sale price
- Unit price
Chives are the smallest species of the onion family 'Alliaceae' native to Europe Asia and North America. The chive is a bulb-forming herbaceous perennial plant growing to 30-50 cm tall. The bulbs are slender conical 2-3 cm long and 1 cm broad and grow in dense clusters from the roots. The leaves are hollow tubular up to 50 cm long and 2-3 mm in diameter with a soft texture although prior to the emergence of a flower from a leaf it may appear stiffer than usual. The flowers are pale purple. It is a common household herb frequent in gardens as well as in grocery stores. It also has insect-repelling properties which can be used in gardens to control pests. Chives are very easy to grow requiring minimal attention and thriving in poor soil and a wide range of conditions. They're wonderfully convenient--just snip off what you need.
Chives can be found fresh at most markets year-round making it a readily available herb; it can also be dry-frozen without much impairment to its taste giving home growers the opportunity to store large quantities harvested from their own garden.
Chives are grown for their leaves which are used for culinary purposes as a flavoring herb and provide a somewhat milder flavour than those of its neighbouring Allium species. Chives have a wide variety of culinary uses such as in traditional dishes in France and Sweden and have been are used with pancakes soups fish and sandwiches. Chives are one of the "fines herbes" of French cuisine which also include tarragon chervil and/or parsley. Snip chives into dishes with scissors; store uncut chives in the fridge in a plastic bag for up to a week. Add chives to dishes at the end of cooking. Dried chives can add an interesting element to homemade Spice Blends. Chives are also a component of fines Herbs.
The medical properties of chives are similar to those of garlic but weaker; the faint effects in comparison with garlic are probably the main reason for its limited use as a medicinal herb. Containing numerous organisulplide compounds such as allyl sulfides and alkyl sulfoxides chives are reported to have a beneficial effect on the circulatory system. As chives are usually served in small amounts and never as the main dish negative effects are rarely encountered although digestive problems may occur following over-consumption.
Chives are also rich in vitamins A and C and contain trace amounts of sulfur and are rich in calcium and iron.