What is Horehound?

Hoarhound FR: Marrube GER: Weiner Andorn IT: Marrobio, Marrubio SP: Marrubio

BOT: Marrubium vulgare (white horehound)

FAM: Labiatae ILL: Plate 13, No. 5

There are two distinct kinds of horehound, white and black. Black horehound (Ballota nigra) is not used as a flavouring. The plants are easily distinguished: white horehound has white flowers, while black horehound has pale purple flowers and is, moreover, covered with a white down on stems and leaves. White horehound is native to Central Asia and Europe, and has been naturalized in North

America. It is common on chalky soil in Britain. The flavour is aromatic and, to some, not very pleasant. It is used for flavouring candy (horehound candy) and horehound ale. Some recommend it for sauces, stews, salads and even cakes. Horehound tea is a remedy for colds and coughs, a cure that was known in the days of Gerard.

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