A L'il about Dill

Dill Photo

Dill Photo

Looking for something "dill-lightful" for your summer menu? Dishes seasoned with dill are sure to fill the bill since this annual herb's perky flavor is appealing and perennially popular.

Dill plants, which grow easily from seed, have single hollow stalks growing up from the root, sometimes to a height of 3 feet, and soft dark-green feathery leaves. Clusters of tiny yellow flowers radiate out from the top of the stems and eventually form the seeds.

Pick a permanent spot for your dill patch. Since the plants readily self-seed, new plants will likely appear in the same plot next year.

The leaves, called dill weed, have a slightly milder flavor than the seeds. Add fresh dill toward the end of cooking. Its flavor doesn't hold up well under prolonged heat.

"Dill-icious" Recipes

Try preparing one of these specialties from some of your fellow cooks.

"I love dill, and when it's in season in my garden, I use as much as possible. I also dry some for cooking in winter," says field editor Mary Steiner of West Bend, Wisconsin. The tangy flavor of dill accents her cool and crunchy Dilled Crab Salad (pictured above).

"When my sister-in-law shared the recipe for Dilly Potato Salad one summer, it became an instant favorite with my family," notes Tiffany Twait from Meridian, Idaho. "The dill pickle relish and fresh dill perk up the flavor.

"The summer we had lots of garden tomatoes we used them in every kind of recipe," writes Lavonne Hartel, field editor from Williston, North Dakota. "This favorite—Broiled Tomatoes with Dill Sauce—is one of the best."