Sage

Ingredients

  • Organic Sage

Origin​

  • Italy

Form

  • Cut and sifted

Certification

  • Organic, Kosher

Typical Use

  • Fall

Background

  • Sage is another herb that has been in use in the Mediterranean region for hundreds if not thousands of years. Sage leaves are unusual looking since they are covered by fur (technically called trichomes) which is whitish and can be clearly seen and felt during touch. 
     

It is a herb that is slightly less common in Italian cooking than the "big" herbs rosemary, oregano, and basil. However, its distinct taste made it a main component of the Italian saltimbocca. Surprisingly it has been widely used in English cooking (in cheeses and sausages). The use of sage has probably been propagated through Christian priests and their herbal gardens in monasteries. The widespread use of sage is probably based on its medicinal uses (which led to its description of sage, the savior). Its medicinal benefits which include a diuretic, antibacterial, nervous/mental conditions, and memory enhancing. Its special claim to fame was the inclusion in the herb cocktail that protected against the plaque and later on the suspicion of use in witchcraft (using sage was not life-enhancing for the witches of Salem, MA).

Cooking

  • Sage is a very distinctive tasting herb which most often is used as the main or only herb in cooking. While it has a very elegant flavor, it can easily overpower dishes. Sage is the main herb for Saltimbocca, a simple, but very sophisticated, visual Southern Italian dish. Across Italy, sage is often used to enhance meat dishes. In England, it is used to enhance cheese and sausage flavors. In the US it is used for Thanksgiving's turkey stuffing.

Cultural​

  • For healers and laypeople in traditional cultures, burning sage is used to achieve a healing state — or to solve or reflect upon spiritual dilemmas. This may have some scientific basis, too. Certain types of sage, including salvia sages and white prairie sage, contain thujone. Research shows that thujone is mildly psychoactive. It’s actually found in many plants used in cultural spiritual rituals to enhance intuition.

​Spiritual

  • Sage has been in use by a few native American tribes where Sage represents the earth element and when burning sage, the smoke from it represents the air. “The goal of smudging is to make a place clear of lingering energy that is different from what you may be intending for that space. You want to prepare the space for ceremony, the way you would clean your house, cook, and decorate when your family comes for a holiday. We are welcoming Great Spirit, angels, and ancestors to come and share clean space with us as well.”

Interestingly enough, in the old world, the word sage has come to mean something like “wise one.” Our mental image of a sage is that of a classical bearded thinker or philosopher, such as Plato and Aristotle. Ironically, however, those people did not see themselves as sages, but as sage-wannabes. The Greek word Philosophia translates as wisdom-love or desire for wisdom. A philosopher is not someone who has wisdom but someone who wants wisdom. A philosopher aspires to become a sage. So the archetypal Sage isn’t someone who spends their days stroking their beard, trying to figure out the meaning of life. A Sage is someone who already knows. That’s not to say that any Sage-type individual is a font of infinite wisdom. Rather, it is that these individuals act with the jollity of one who knows just enough to not take life seriously.

Medicinal​

  • The leaf is used to make medicine. Sage is used for digestive problems, including loss of appetite, gas (flatulence), stomach pain (gastritis), diarrhea, bloating, and heartburn. It is also used for reducing overproduction of perspiration and saliva; and for depression, memory loss, and Alzheimer's disease.


In ancient Rome, sage was considered to have substantial healing properties, particularly helpful in the digestion of the ubiquitous fatty meats of the time, and was deemed a part of the official Roman pharmacopeia. The herb was used to heal ulcers, to help stop the bleeding of wounds, and to soothe a sore throat. The Chinese used sage to treat colds, joint pain, typhoid fever, and kidney and liver issues.

Recipes

 

Shop​

Sage-with-Puck.jpg
Sage-with-Baggie.jpg

Copyright © 2019 Five Continent Spices

Santa Cruz, CA, United States

  • Facebook Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon
  • Instagram Social Icon

(408) 714-0009