The name Smyrnium comes from Smyrn, the former name of Izmir in Turkey: Alexanders is originally from the Middle East, and the Mediterranean.
It was introduced to France by the Romans, and by the crusaders on their return.
It is grown by the cistercian monks in the Abbaye des Chateliers on Ile de Ré. It is widely used and all of the plant is edible: its root looks like a large black radish, its stalk can be used to replace salsify, its leaves are like parsley, the buds can be used like capers and the seeds like pepper.
Alexanders is said to reduce sexual desire… and it is widely found around abbeys.…
Nowadays, it is found in salty marshes, where it grows in competition with wild mustard. It is picked in the wild by a handful of salt farmers on the ile de Ré.
|Shelf life||5 years|