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Parsley     In ancient times parsley wreaths were used to ward off drunkenness — though proof of their efficacy in that capacity is scarce. Today, this slightly peppery, fresh-flavored herb is more commonly used as a flavoring and garnish. Though there are more than 30 varieties of this herb, the most popular are curly-leaf parsley and the more strongly flavored Italian or flat-leaf parsley. Fresh curly leaf parsley is widely available year-round, while Italian parsley must sometimes be searched out in gourmet produce markets. Parsley is sold in bunches and should be chosen for its bright-green leaves that show no sign of wilting. Wash fresh parsley, shaking off excess moisture, and wrap first in paper towels, then in a plastic bag. Refrigerate for up to a week. Dried parsley is available in the spice section of most supermarkets but bears little resemblance to the flavor of fresh. Parsley is an excellent source of vitamins A and C.

    If you've got it, but don't know what to do with it, below are some traditional dishes that the herb complements nicely.

Salads aspics; chicken; egg; fish and shellfish; mixed greens; potato; vegetable
Soups & Stews almost all soups except fruit
Fish & Poultry chicken; duck; most fish and shellfish; turkey
Meats beef; lamb; liver; pork; veal; venison
Vegetables almost any vegetable
Pasta; Grains;
Dried Beans
almost all pasta, grains and dried beans
Cheese & Egg Dishes all savory cheese and egg dishes
Sauces almost all savory sauces
Miscellaneous garnish; herb butter

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