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Thread: any substitute for bay leaves?

  1. #1

    Question any substitute for bay leaves?

    looking for a substitute if you guys know of one - it is much too blustery w/ -25 wind chills to go out and get some!! thanks

    jen

  2. #2

    Post

    What are you intending to make? If it's a soup or sauce, I'd just use an appropriate dried herb. Thyme goes with just about anything.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Manhattan
    Posts
    3,970

    Post

    Hmmm. I checked Cook's Thesaurus and it looks like the substitutes are not likley to be on hand (see below for the text from that page). In another part of the page they listed bay leaf and basil both as substitutes for something. They noted that basil would be a different flavor though. What a surprise! Maybe if you told us what you wanted to use the bay leaf in, some other more knowledgable ones could recommend something to sub that would work with your dish.


    "bay leaf = bay laurel leaf = laurel leaf = sweet bay laurel leaf Equivalents: One whole leaf = 1/4 teaspoon crushed. Substitute one fresh leaf for every two dried leaves, and one California bay leaf for every two Turkish bay leaves. Notes: Bay leaves are a staple of Mediterranean cuisines, lending a woodsy flavor to sauces, stews, and grilled meats. It's best to add whole leaves, then remove them before serving the dish. The Turkish bay leaf is smaller and less potent than the California bay leaf, but more highly prized due to the complexity of its flavor. Dried leaves are a good substitute for fresh. Substitutes: Indian bay leaves OR boldo leaves (stronger flavor) OR juniper berries (to flavor meat)"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    3,014

    Post

    I don't really think there's anything you can use that would give you the essence of bay leaf,(but I'm certainly not suggesting you go out in the weather to get it!) but you could probably use something that would add just as much flavor--just not the same flavor. I'm also interested in what the recipe is, but you could probably use thyme
    as Pat suggested, and depending on what you're making, oregeno or rosemary?

  5. #5

    Post

    sorry - i should have told you guys what i'm making - it is the rosemary split pea soup that everyone has been raving about. i just added a little extra rosemary (i can't get enough of it like emilycat) and used 3 cups broth, 3 cups water instead of 2 cups broth, 4 cups water. i also added a little poultry seasoning - i'll let you guys know how it turned out w/out the bay leaf.
    and please post any suggestions you would have had for this recipe. thanks!

    jen

  6. #6

    Post

    wow!! is that soup delicious! it is definitely going on our standard soup list - it had such great flavor - even w/out the bay leaf. can't wait to eat the left overs tomorrow night!

    jen

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    3,155

    Post

    Hi jjf. This probably doesn't help but when I lived in Oregon sometimes folks substituted myrtle leaves for bay. I suspect if you don't have bay your really don't have myrtle but I'm curious if anyone else out there has heard of or used this substitution.

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