Lovage (Levisticum officinale)
Native to Europe and Southern Asia, lovage has been harvested for all parts of the plant. The celery-like roots are often grated into salads and used to add flavour and body to soups, while the seeds are extremely popular in soups and recipes in Eastern and Southern Europe.
Infused into a tea it has long been held to have antiseptic properties, and traditionally a cordial made from the herb was mixed with brandy to provide a warming, medicinal drink during harsh winters.
Lovage is popular with a variety of game dishes in Scotland, being a perfect complement to the rich flavours of the meat.
Try mixing the parsley-like leaves with natural yoghurt for a refreshing dip for grilled meats and bread.