Posted: 10/08/2017 at 16:07
I have a friend who uses the seeds from Nigella damascena for cooking ... she and her family have survived so far
To check my information I found this
"... The seeds of Nigella sativa, kno wn as kalonji, black cumin (though this can also refer to Bunium persicum) black onion seedor just nigella, are used as a spice in Indian and Middle Eastern cuisine. The dry roasted nigella seeds flavour curries, vegetables and pulses. The black seeds taste like oregano and have a bitterness to them like mustard-seeds. From my herb 'bible', the excellent "Herbs" - Roger Phillips & Nicky Foy (ISBN 978-0330307253), which I am inclined to trust:
"[Nigella damascena - Medicinal herbs section] The seeds of this plant and a similar species have a strong aromatic odour and a spicy taste and are used as a condiment or spice to flavour cakes, breads and curries. In India they also put them amongst clothes and bed-linen to repel moths ans Indian doctors consider the seeds to be a stimulant, an aid to menstruation and milk flow in nursing mothers. They are also used medicinally to relieve digestive upsets and bowel complaints."
I have seen uncited web references to damascena being toxic, but all references that cited sources referred to the seeds as edible. I would think it fine to use seeds from Nigella damascena in moderation, but if you use this herb in large quantities, buy commercially produced Nigella sativa seeds...."
on this site https://www.cookipedia.co.uk/recipes_wiki/Nigella which I have always found to be reliable.
Of course, if you leave the seedheads on the plants your garden is likely to be invaded by goldfinches
Last edited: 10 August 2017 16:08:32