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Also known as Indian Dill, originally from Southwest Asia, Dill is an annual or biennial herb that grows up to 1 meter (3 feet). It has green feathery leaves and umbels of small yellow flowers, followed by tiny compressed seeds.
It was popular with the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, who called it "Anethon" from which the botanical name was derived. The common name comes from the Anglo-Saxon dylle or dylla, which then changed to dill. The word means 'to lull' – referring to its soothing properties. In the Middle Ages it was used as a charm against witchcraft.
Dill oil is known for its grass-like smell and its pale yellow color, with a watery viscosity.
Dill oil is extracted by steam distillation, mainly from the seeds, or the whole herb, fresh or partly dried.