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What is the difference between Mexican oregano and regular oreganos?

What is the difference between Mexican oregano and regular oreganos?

What is the difference between Mexican oregano and regular oreganos?

Mexican oregano and regular oregano are different species of plants, but they share some flavor and aroma compounds. They have similar visual characteristics, but Mexican oregano has a more pungent taste and distinct aroma.

Here are some differences between Mexican oregano and regular oregano:

  • Taste: Mexican oregano is more robust, less bitter, and has less mint flavor than regular oregano. It has a citrus profile with hints of licorice.
  • Aroma: Mexican oregano has a different aroma than regular oregano.
  • Appearance: Some say Mexican oregano is 80 grit sandpaper, while oregano is 200 grit.
  • Uses: Mexican oregano pairs well with chiles, beans, and ground meats. Regular oregano, such as pasta sauces, grilled meats, seafood dishes, and pizza, is often used in Italian and Mediterranean cooking.
  • Family: Mexican oregano is actually in the Verbena family.

The Mediterranean oregano was milder and faintly sweeter, while the Mexican type was more robust, with a hint of menthol. As with other dried herbs, oregano’s volatile compounds will eventually dissipate. Whichever kind you choose, store it in a cool, dry, dark place to preserve its flavor.

Mexican Oregano, or lippia graveolens, is a member of the verbena family. It tastes similar to Mediterranean oregano but has a bit more bite. Sorry, but that is the only way I know to describe it.

Mediterranean oregano, or origanum vulgare, is a member of the mint family. It has a much more subtle and sweeter flavor than Mexican oregano.

When I was growing up, I had no idea it was not the same plant. I thought Mexican oregano was just Mediterranean oregano grown in Mexico. Thankfully, the internet and Food Network came around, and I learned differently. All we ever had in the house was Mexican oregano, and I still prefer the more biting flavor of it today.

I keep both in the pantry, though, as my wife did not grow up using any oregano and does not like that bite in our “Italian” dishes.

What is the difference between Mexican oregano and Italian oregano?

The scientific answers here are above and beyond the call of duty! Very thorough and insightful. But as someone who cooks with oregano often, I’d like to chime in with the uses and flavor profile information.

The main differences between Mexican and Italian oregano are pretty striking. I recommend finding them fresh and assessing them. You’ll see that the Mexican oregano looks heartier and smells more intense, while the Italian variety is more delicate, smaller, and smells much sweeter. The same goes for the dry varieties. As they dry, the flavors concentrate, so the Mexican variety gets even stronger and more intense, easily outpacing the Italian variety in strength but losing any softness and sweetness.

Because of the above, I only use Mexican oregano for Mexican dishes chock full of intense flavors that can compete with it to avoid overpowering the entire dish. Also, I stick with the Italian variety for most recipes, calling for fresh oregano to keep things fresh and light.

How long can you use dry oregano without losing its flavor?

Oregano is harvested when blooming. In Sicily, this occurs in summer. People hang them upside down, drying. Till it looks like this:

Once dried, it is stored in a dark and dry place. Rub it between your hands when you need it. It lasts precisely one year till new oregano is harvested.

In which type of foods is the ‘oregano’ herb used?

What foods are great with oregano besides pizza?

Oregano gives many dishes a robust and spicy aroma. A distinction is made between different types of herb: In addition to the oregano from the Mediterranean, which is widespread, there is also a Mexican and Greek variant of the herb.

Mexican oregano is a plant growing there that is only distantly related to the Mediterranean variant but has a similar taste. Greek oregano, on the other hand, tastes particularly intense.

The tart-bitter, piquant-aromatic aroma with a slight spiciness is particularly intense when seasoned with dried oregano. The typical Italian spice can, in principle, also be processed fresh.

It goes well with various hearty dishes, including focaccia, and can be combined with most other Mediterranean spices, such as rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, or sage.

• Tomato dishes: Not only pizza but many other tomato dishes harmonize perfectly with the aroma of oregano. Especially southern Italian cuisine; for example, they season tomato soups and sauces with the spice mainly associated with pizza in this country. It is often combined with basil or capers for this.

• Meat: Veal and pork, in particular, can be prepared spicy and aromatic with the help of oregano. Traditionally, in Italy, the sauce for these types of meat is seasoned with oregano, often made based on tomatoes. Garlic is also often added. In the USA and Mexico, traditional meat dishes are constantly refined with oregano – the Mexican version of the herb is used here. Chili con carne, for example, gets some of its flavor. Various wraps with meat, beans, or corn can also be refined with oregano.

• Stews, soups, and casseroles: oregano is used to season various hearty dishes based on meat and vegetables. The dried herbs should be cooked for at least 15 minutes to develop their flavor fully. Potato soups or casseroles with potatoes become very aromatic in combination with oregano.

• Tea: Oregano can also be drunk as a tea by pouring boiling water over it while it is dry and letting it steep for a few minutes. The tea has a beneficial effect on cold symptoms and acts antibacterial. Oregano can also be helpful for stomach cramps and digestive problems.

What is the difference between Italian Oregano and Greek Oregano?

Oregano is still the same plant… The difference is made mainly by climate and soil. Calabrian Oregano is vital, as Sicilian, Apulian is lighter, and Gargano zone (northern Apulia) is lemon-flavored; the Greek typically has more giant leaves, which is fabulous. 

Now, I’m using a zero-kilometer one grown near my town. It has a good flavor and is less zesty than the southern one but is more complex. I put it inside my oil-preserved dry tomatoes…in October; I will let you know if it was a good choice.

What makes oregano antibacterial?

Carvacrol and thymol are the significant constituents of oregano, which have antibacterial properties.

1-What is carvacrol?

Carvacrol is an active element of thyme, Organum vulgare, Organum onites (pot marjoram), and other plants. It is a monoterpenoid, i.e., an organic compound containing only carbon and hydrogen, which can be produced synthetically or extracted from plants. Carvacrol is a flavoring agent in food industries, such as oregano oil, especially in Italy.

As carvacrol has antimicrobial properties against many pathogenic bacteria, it is used as an antimicrobial agent in some medicines, including mouthwash agents.

2-What is thymol?

Thymol is a monoterpene phenolic ether first identified by the German chemists Wolfgang Stahl and Kurt Heinrich Hoppe in 1830. It is produced naturally by some species of thyme (namely Thymus vulgaris ), but commercially, it is derived from plants of the genus Organum (family Labiate, sub-family Nepetoideae).

Thymol has antibacterial, antifungal, and antioxidant activities. It is widely used in mouthwash, toothpaste, soaps, and topical applications for its antiseptic qualities. It is also used as a preservative for food and cosmetics.

3-What are the antibacterial effects of carvacrol and thymol?

Carvacrol inhibits bacterial growth by penetrating bacterial membranes, whereas thymol can permeate the bacteria further than carvacrol. Various studies have shown that carvacrol and thymol are more effective against Gram-positive bacteria than Gram-negative.

4-What are the applications of oregano oil?

Carvacrol in oregano oil has been reported to possess antibacterial, antifungal, antioxidant activities, antiplatelet aggregation, analgesic, and anti-inflammatory effects.

Carvacrol is used as a food preservative and as an additive for animal feed because of its antibacterial properties (mainly in oregano oil). It has been commercialized as a natural antiseptic against bacteria and fungi on several products, including mouthwash agents, soap, and topical applications. It is also used as a preservative for food and cosmetics.

Carvacrol can be found in mouthwashes, toothpaste, soap, and some topical applications due to its antiseptic qualities.

What can we use in place of oregano?

Some are allergic to oregano and, therefore, have to look for alternatives to avoid changing the taste of the dishes that use generous sums of this herb. This post will tell you about a few suitable oregano substitutes that make way for only very few taste variations.

Substitutes of Oregano

  • Marjoram.
  • Dried Marjoram.
  • Basil Bunch.
  • Fresh Parsley.
  • Parsley and Basil.
  • Tarragon.
  • Dill Herb.
  • Fennel Vegetable.

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  • An ingredient called for: Fresh oregano leaves
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with three teaspoons of marjoram
  • Nature of the Substitute: Marjoram is sweeter, so it is also an excellent tarragon substitute and a tad less sharp in its taste than oregano.
  • Best Used for:
  • Use it ideally for dishes with pork and chicken.
  • Dried Marjoram
  • An ingredient called for Dried oregano leaves
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: ¾th teaspoon
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of dried marjoram
  • Basil Bunch
  • Quantity of Oregano Required:2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with teaspoons of basil (one can even opt for sweet or Italian basil to replace oregano)
  • Best Used for Beef preparations of any kind.
  • It also works like magic when preparations involve potatoes or bread.
  • Fresh Parsley
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with teaspoons of parsley
  • Best Used for Works well in tomato-based dishes.
  • Parsley and Basil
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of parsley + 1 teaspoon of ba
  • Tarragon
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with teaspoons of tarragon
  • Best Used Works well when replaced with oregano, specifically for a tomato-based dish, like Bolognese sauce. Also, it replaces oregano well in salad dressings.
  • Dill Herb
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with 1½ teaspoons of dill (add more if you want the flavor to be more robust)
  • Best Used Works well when replaced with oregano, specifically for a tomato-based dish, like Bolognese sauce. Also, returns oregano well in salad dressings.
  • Fennel Vegetable
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with 1½ teaspoons of fennel (add more if you want the flavor to be more robust)
  • Best Used Works well when replaced with oregano, specifically for a tomato-based dish, like Bolognese sauce. Also, it replaces oregano well in salad dressings.
  • Dried Italian Seasoning
  • Quantity of Oregano Required:2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of dried Italian seasoning (add more if you want the flavor to be more robust)
  • Summer Savory
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with teaspoons of summer savory
  • Sage Herb
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with a teaspoon of sage (add more if you want the flavor to be more robust)

Mexican Oregano

This option is very readily available to people in the United States.

  • Quantity of Oregano Required:2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of Mexican oregano
  • Nature of the Substitute: Mexican oregano, with its mintier taste, has a more enhanced flavor than ordinary oregano. So, one must first use only half the amount of oregano required and then add more if needed.

Pinch of Rosemary

  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 1 teaspoon
  • To be Replaced with a pinch of rosemary (add more if you want the flavor to be more robust)
  • Best Used for Grand for tomato-based dishes.

Bunch Of Thyme

  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with two teaspoons of thyme
  • Best Used for Beef preparations of any kind. Any Mediterranean preparation involving meat. All recipes based on beans, bread, potatoes, and tomatoes call for oregano. Replaces oregano well in salad dressings as well.

Marjoram and Basil

  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of marjoram + 1 teaspoon of basil

Marjoram And Thyme

  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 2 teaspoons
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of marjoram + 1 teaspoon of thyme

Dried Oregano

  • The ingredient called for Fresh oregano leaves
  • Quantity of Oregano Required: 1 tablespoon
  • To be Replaced with one teaspoon of dried OR liquid oregano
  • Nature of the Substitute: The flavor of dried oregano is more robust than that of fresh oregano leaves. Remember that it is best to crush dried oregano before adding it to the dish you are cooking, as it completely releases the flavor and essential oils in the herb.

So, use these substitutes if you have to. If none of these work for you, use some Italian seasoning, which is bound to work, for it consists of oregano, among other ingredients.

Now that you know all the ingredients that can replace oregano with varying degrees of success, let us see what oregano, Greek for “joy of the mountain,” is all about. After all, one should always know what they are opting out of.

What can we use in place of Oregano?

Spice to replace Oregano:

Oregano has Minty flavor notes, which could be replaced by,

  1. Peppermint leaves in the freshly crushed, ground, or dry powder form
  2. Basil or thyme leaves in any form

However, I prefer coriander (cilantro leaf) or cumin to replace Oregano.

If the recipe or your taste preference permits, cumin and coriander could be used instead of Oregano.

Are Marjoram and Oregano the same herbs?

Yes and no.

They are from the same plant ‘family’ but different plants.

The Oregano most people think of is the tangy, spicy variety used in pizza.

Sweet Marjoram is a sweeter, milder cousin. It is often used in pasta dishes.

Look for botanical names to keep it straight when growing Oregano or marjoram.

Origanum vulgare is the botanical name associated with Greek Oregano.

Origanum majorana is the botanical name associated with Sweet Majoram.

To make things more confusing, there are many types of Oregano and marjoram.

One good way is to use the taste test. Taste the difference between Greek Oregano and Sweet Marjoram so you know how to distinguish the two.

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Are oregano and oregano oil consumption safe for kids?

Oregano oil is safe to use but can have some side effects. Avoid using it if you’re allergic to mint, sage, basil, or lavender. Don’t use oregano oil if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. Talk to your pediatrician before using it on a child

Applications for Children

Opinions vary on whether the oil should be used for children. Some manufacturers only advocate topical application, while others support oral dosing for children under five or older. It is generally agreed that oil of oregano should not be used by pregnant or nursing mothers, and most agree it should not be used on young infants, although some advocate applying it to the soles of the feet or in the bath water of infants as young as six months. As of 2010, there is no consensus on safe use for Children.

Potential Side Effects

Oregano oil can have many noteworthy side effects. Allergic reactions and skin irritation are most common. Topical application can cause a burning sensation and rash. When ingested by pregnant women, the oil may overstimulate blood flow to the uterus and weaken the uterine lining. 

Oregano oil has also been found to interfere with iron absorption. This is particularly important for children because the body uses dietary iron to make hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein.

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What is oregano, and how is it made?

Oregano (Origanum vulgare), also called Wild marjoram, is a Mediterranean herb from the mint family. Oregano, which originated in Greece, has been in use for centuries. In olden times, it was used to cure various ailments.

Dried leaves, flowers & essential oils are commonly used in cooking and alternative medicine. In cooking, it is extensively used in pizzas and pasta sauces. It is also used for sprinkling various meat/chicken dishes & salads. Oregano contains some essential nutrients like potassium, calcium, Vitamin K & rich in antioxidants.

Medicinally, oregano has anti-fungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Essential oil is explicitly used for muscle pains, parasitic infections, acne, dandruff, headaches, allergies, etc. It can be mixed with a carrier oil and used for external applications. Oregano-dried leaves can be used in herbal teas as well.

The only precaution to be noted is that if a person has an allergy to mint, then oregano should not be used.

Enjoy the flavors of the Mediterranean with this beautiful herb—Oregano.

How do I make oregano oil quickly from whole oregano (in spice isle, dried)?

Under those conditions, it does not look possible to me. Harvested and dried for culinary use, oregano is relatively weak for medicinal use.

Culinary oregano is harvested just as it begins to flower, which lowers the amount of resins containing carvacrol, thymol, and other beneficial compounds.

Oregano harvested at peak flowering is significantly higher in resin content, which you should use medicinally. It has a much better, more robust flavor, too.

If you wanted to extract essential oil from it, you would need to use the proper equipment. It varies; here is a sample of what it can be: A small Essential Oil Extraction Machine, Making Fragrant Essential Oil For You

However, the essential oil of oregano oil is different. Essential oil should be diluted with some vegetable oil before use because it is irritating if taken at full strength. If the essential oil is left on the skin, it will blister it in much the same way as poison oak does and itch, too.

Oregano oil is what you can obtain by soaking it in oil over a sufficient amount of time, i.e., not quickly, such that the resinous constituents are infused into the oil. Olive oil is often used, but other edible oils can also be used.

A tincture of oregano is more accessible, faster to make, and more effective medicinally. Ethanol can extract more constituents from the plant than an oil soak can.

The flowers and leaves of whole-bloom oregano can fill a jar about 2/3 full; then it is filled to the top with vodka, sealed, and placed in a dark place to sit for a while.

It matures in about two to three weeks. The liquid will be a dark reddish brown.

A full shot glass followed by a drink of water makes an effective dose. I recently found a new use for it in treating a salmonella infection. It can wipe it out in less than a day.

What is the difference between Dominican oregano and Mexican oregano?

Simply put, Dominican oregano is natural oregano; Mexican oregano is not. Dominican oregano is darker and more robust than the standard oregano in the grocery store. It is also less sweet. Mexican oregano has a more rustic flavor, more wild and woody.

Which cuisine uses more oregano, Mexican or Italian?

Based on the cookbook reading, I guess that traditional growing areas and limited sampling would be Greek and Mediterranean, probably the most used cuisines. Using that same logic, some parts of Italy would have a decent amount of oregano in their cooking.

Yes, I am familiar with some areas of Mexican cooking, but I wonder if I would say that throughout the cuisine, oregano predominates, much like Italian. Even with the many islands of Greece, due to the wild growth and poverty cooking, Greek cooking would be the third winner not mentioned.

Herbs: What can I make with fresh oregano?

Originally Answered: What can I make with fresh oregano?

I make a pesto using fresh oregano, pistachio nuts, Parmigiano cheese, and olive oil. Just add all the ingredients in a food processor and give it a few spins.

I planted a few fresh oregano sprigs in my yard a few years ago, but I didn’t know they spread like weeds. So, in self-defense, instead of napalming, I gather them up, tie them in bunches, and hang them upside down on the pipes in my cellar to dry. I give them to my friends and customers.

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What is the Calabrian variety of oregano?

The Calabrian variety of oregano is a type of oregano (Origanum vulgare) that is native to the Calabria region in southern Italy. It is known for its strong, pungent flavor and aroma and is a popular ingredient in many Mediterranean dishes, particularly those from the Calabria region. Calabrian oregano is often used in pizza and pasta sauces, marinades, and meat dishes and can also be used to flavor oils and vinegar. 

The plant is a perennial herb that can grow up to 60 cm tall and has small, oval-shaped leaves that are dark green

What is the difference between ground oregano and oregano leaves?

I’ve collected fresh oregano many times. One harvests it from low shrubs when the little leaves have dried. You cut the small branches off and then rub them with your hands over wax paper to remove the leaves. Ground oregano is simply placing these small leaves into a grinder to make them uniform in size. I don’t use ground oregano as the flavor is longer stored in glass containers when it’s not ground up.

How much ground oregano should I use instead of dried oregano?

First, there are two prominent varieties of oregano: Italian and Mexican. The former, dried, is a staple in most Italian dishes; it gives a sour, tangy flavor that tangoes happily with basil and tomato, i.e., perfect for most sauces, and a critical element in pasta, pizza, and other tomato-based preparations, often with dry basil.

The latter, Mexican, is also dried and best in salsa, meat dishes, and other long-cooked dishes, with red and green chile (fresh or dry). It is grown in Chihuahua, where the altitude and low humidity intensify the flavor: very sour, usually incorporated in dishes like Albondigas or Chile Verde (often provided mixed with minced raw onion as a condiment).

This dry leaf/onion mix — served at the table or over the pot, especially for Menudo, Albondigas, or Chile Verde (a pork stew with mild pasilla chile), is traditional Mexican “comfort food.”

Fresh oregano leaves, which I grow in a wine barrel outside the kitchen door, and thyme, rosemary, chives, and coriander (cilantro) are another matter. They are milder but can be added to many things (chicken stock, salads). There is nothing like an omelet cooked very soft in sweet butter, softened by chopped herbs or shallots.

The chief difference between dried, crumbled, and minced fresh oregano is flavor intensity. Fresh is always more subtle.

What is the difference between Mexican oregano and regular oreganos?