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LICORICE ROOT (Glycyrrhiza sp.)
October 2014 Issue / Vol. 2, No. 19                                   The chef's new trend is a healers' old friend



      
Owner/Chef Michael O'Dowd
5-Star/5-Diamond

     
Executive Chef
David Schmidt

      
October 2014
Chef's Larder

     
       
Executive Chef
John Wooters


     
A Midwinter Night's Dram
by High West Distillery

     
Moonshine Nation
by Mark Spivak

       
Che-Ah-Chi: Sedona, AZ

      
Daylight Farms
Half Moon Bay, CA


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Synopsis: FOODIES WEST - Wild Sourcing - Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza sp.)

Lately, licorice root has been showing up on trendy menus across the nation. Its deeply sweet, earthy taste stands up to the strongest of flavors—in a latte, a dressing for bitter greens, a tri-tip steak infusion—to name a few ways chefs have used it. Licorice root goes by the common name Sweet Root (Greek glykys, or “sweet” and rhiza, or “root”) because of its cloying component, glycyrrhizin, which researchers claim is 50 times sweeter than sugar. American licorice (Glycyrrhiza lepidota) contains 6% glycyrrhizin. The popular Glycyrrhiza glabra, from (mostly) Greece, Turkey and Asia, contains up to 9%. The general descriptor for licorice root is demulcent. Glycyrrhizin gives licorice root the antimicrobial oomph that makes it an herb of choice for stomach and lung maladies, including ulcers, IBD, tuberculosis and SARS.