Oregano is also known as wild marjoram. It is the O. vulgare variety of the Origanum family. Oregano is available in fresh leaves from most grocery stores. This herb is also found dried in leaf form or ground. Store dry forms in a cool, dry, dark place.
Oregano is an herb that derives its name from two Greek words meaning "the joy of the mountain". It is a hardy member of the mint family that has been used for flavoring fish, meat and sauces since ancient times.
Oregano goes well with vegetables, roast beef, lamb, chicken and pork. Marjoram goes well with all pork and veal and complements stuffing for poultry, dumplings and herb scones or breads.
Generally used to season Mexican, Italian, Greek and Spanish dishes. Oregano has a warm, aromatic scent and robust taste. It's uses include seasoning soups, stews, meat pies, pasta sauces and shellfish.
Cultivation of Oregano
Site: Oregano is easy to grow. It enjoys bright sunlight and is not too dependent on soil type in your herb garden. Oregano prefers drier soil conditions.
Propagation: Start oregano either from seed in spring or from from cuttings in the summer or root divisions in the fall.
Growing: Oregano will creep along the ground growing to 6 feet in girth in a single season.You can grow Oregano in pots if it is are given plenty of light.
Harvesting: Trim the leaves as you need them.
Culinary Uses: Oregano's strong and robust flavor is often found in the cuisine of Italy, Greece, North Africa and Mexico. It's pungent, spicy flavor goes well with tomato based sauces, eggplant, seafood, and grilled meats. Italian dishes are almost synonymous with oregano, in fact, who could imagine pasta sauce or pizza without it. Oregano's rich flavor deepens and blends with flavors of soups and sauces without being overwhelming. Because it retains its flavor well, oregano can be used either fresh or dried.