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Table 2 Home country food plant and herbal ingredients used by Moroccan migrants in Piedmont

From: Keeping or changing? Two different cultural adaptation strategies in the domestic use of home country food plant and herbal ingredients among Albanian and Moroccan migrants in Northwestern Italy

Botanical name of the plant ingredient and its botanical family Common English name Recorded Arabic name Locally acquired (L) (cultivated, purchased or gathered from the wild [G]) or informally imported from Morocco (I) Part(s) used Recorded food (F), medicinal (M), and food-medicinal (F/M) uses Frequency of quotation
Allium sativum L., Amaryllidaceae Garlic Thawm, Tuma L Bu F/M: consumed for treating cold and flu and as an anti-bacterial agent (also macerated in oil for 1 month and then oil used when needed) ++
Aloysia citriodora Palau, Verbenaceae Lemon verbena Luisa L Le M: tea for treating digestive discomforts, headaches, fever, and as a relaxing agent ++
Argania spinosa (L.) Skeels, Sapotaceae Argan Argan L and I Fr- > Oil F: garnishing cous cous; dip for flatbread; used to prepare amlou, a cream made with argan oil, almonds, and honey; M: externally applied for treating dermatitis and dry skin and on the hair (cosmetic); internally as a cholesterol reducer ++
Artemisia arborescens (Vaill.) L., Asteraceae Wormwood Sheeba L and I Le M: tea (alone or added to mint tea), for treating cough +++
Capsicum annuum L., Solanaceae Chili Filfil harr L Fr F/M: seasoning, considered “good for blood circulation” ++
Cinnamomum verum J.Presl, Lauraceae Cinnamon Karfa L Ba F/M: spice for savory and sweet dishes; considered able to counteract diabetes and to relief menstrual pains ++
Citrus limon (L.) Osbeck, Rutaceae Lemon Liymun L Fr F: pickled in brine M: ingredients for treating various diseases (mixed with turmeric, ginger, epazote, and sage) ++
Cladanthus mixtus (L.) Chevall. and Matricaria chamomilla L., Asteraceae Moroccan and Italian chamomile Babunj L and I   M: tea used for treating stomach-aches and menstrual cramps, and as a calming agent; given to sick children ++
Coriandrum sativum L., Apiaceae Coriander Kusbar L Fr F: cooking spice for savory dishes; universal spice mix base ++
Crocus sativus L., Iridaceae Saffron Zaafaran al hur L Sg F: cooking spice and colorant for savory and sweet dishes; F/M: consumed for treating stomach discomforts and fever during pregnancy ++
Cucurbita pepo L., Cucurbitaceae Squash Zeret gara L Se F/M: consumed for prostate health +
Cuminum cyminum L., Apiaceae Cumin Kamun L Fr F: cooking spice for lentil and fish dishes; F/M: consumed as a means for treating stomach diseases, liver infections and as a digestive (also fruits macerated in water and then drunk) +++
Curcuma longa L., Zingiberaceae Turmeric Karkoum L and I Ro F: seasoning and colorant for savory dishes; F/M: consumed, it is considered able to treat colds and skin and liver diseases, and as a panacea (sometimes mixed with lemon juice and honey) +++
Dysphania ambrosioides (L.) Mosyakin and Clemants, Amaranthaceae Epazote Mkhinza I Le M: tea as an anti-fever agent (sometimes with lemon juice); also mixed with red onion and Bible hyssop to create a paste to be applied to the head ++
Elettaria cardamomum (L.) Maton, Zingiberaceae Cardamom (green) Huba alhal L Fr F: cooking spice for savory dishes +
Ficus carica L., Moraceae Fig Shreha L Fr M: fruits left in olive oil for approx. One month, then oil drunk as needed for treating constipation +
Foeniculum vulgare Mill., Apiaceae Fennel Alshamra L Fr F: garnish for sweets and breads; cooking spice for savory dishes; M: tea considered good as a digestive (sometimes ground fruit with coffee), to promote lactation; calmative for children; and for losing weight ++
Juniperus oxycedrus L., Cupressaceae Juniper (cade) Quatran I Fr- > Oil M: hair treatment (dying mean) +
Laurus nobilis L., Lauraceae Bay laurel Wrqa sidna musar L and I Le F: seasoning for chicken and red meat dishes; M: dried leaves are burned, and vapors inhaled for treating fever, to clear throat and help sleep ++
Lavandula spp., Lamiaceae Lavender Khzama L Fl M: tea used for lung problems, rheumatisms, stomach-ache, bladder problems, and constipation ++
Lawsonia inermis L., Lythraceae Henna Alhana L Le M: paste used to color hair or decorate skin +
Lepidium sativum L., Brassicaceae Garden cress Hab rchad L Se M: to “warm the body” and to prevent colds ++
Linum usitatissimum L., Linaceae Flax Zeret kitan L Se F: garnish for sweets and breads +
Malva sylvestris L., Malvaceae Mallow Khobiza L (G) Le M: tea for cold and inflammations of the digestive tract ++
Mentha pulegium L., Lamiaceae Pennyroyal Fliou L   M: tea for sore throats, cold, and fever +++
Mentha spicata L., Lamiaceae Spearmint Nene L Le M: recreational and digestive tea +++
Mentha suaveolens Ehrh., Lamiaceae Apple mint Marseta L (G)   F: occasionally gathered from the roadside and consumed on bread; F/M: consumed with honey as a strengthening agent, for improving mental capabilities and against colds +
Myristica fragrans Houtt., Myristicaceae Nutmeg Gouza L Se F: spice for sweets +
Nigella sativa L., Ranunculaceae Nigella sativa Al habba assawda L Se F: garnish for sweets and breads; M: remedy for colds, cough, promoting lactation, and treating bone problems; seeds burned, the smoke released throughout the house, with windows open: considered able to counteract negative energies ++
Olea europaea L., Oleaceae Olive Zeytun L Le, Fr- > Oil F/M: oil considered good for general health; M: leaves in tea for treating high blood pressure ++
Origanum majorana L., Lamiaceae Marjoram Mardadouch L Le F/M: seasoning and digestive agent M: recreational tea +
Origanum syriacum L. and O. vulgare L. Lamiaceae Bible hyssop and Oregano Zaatar L and I Leaves F: herb for some savory dishes F/M: also considered useful in food as a digestive aid (carminative), for reliving menstrual pains, as an anti-fever agent, against stomach-aches, as an anti-diarrheal agent, and for losing weight +++
Papaver somniferum L. Papaveraceae Poppy Budhur alkhashkhash L Se F: garnish for sweets and breads +
Phoenix dactylifera L., Arecaceae Date Tmar L and I Fr F/M: consumed for providing strength and energy (“Muslims should eat 3, 5 or 7 dates every day, like the Prophet Mohammad”) +++
Pimpinella anisum L., Apiaceae Anise Nafaa, Yassun, Habat hlewa L Fr F: garnish for sweets and breads; M: tea considered good as a digestive and for losing weight (sometimes fruits ground with coffee) +
Piper nigrum L., Piperaceae Black pepper Al folfol al aryad L Fr F: belbula (dish made with wheat, milk, and pepper) F/M: seasoning as a digestive aid +++
Pistacia lentiscus L., Anacardiaceae Mastic Maska al hurra I Re F/M: as a natural chewing gum, for treating toothaches ++
Punica granatum L., Lythraceae Pomegranate Raman L Fr F/M: consumed for general health (as one of the foods mentioned in the Quran it is thus believed curative) +
Rosa spp., Rosaceae Rose Waradi L Fl F: flavoring for sweets; F/M: considered an aphrodisiac +
Rosmarinus officinalis L., Lamiaceae Rosemary Iklil al jabal, Azir L Le M: tea for relieving sore throats and good for the general health ++
Salvadora persica L., Salvadoraceae Tooothbrush tree Miswak L and I Wo M: oral hygiene, externally applied; in teas, for treating stomach problems and during menstruation +++
Salvia officinalis L., Lamiaceae Sage Salmiya L Le M: tea for relieving sore throats and heart problems; with lemon for treating stomach-aches ++
Sesamum indicum L., Pedaliaceae Sesame Assimssim, zanjlan L Se F: garnish for sweets, breads, and savory dishes F/M: strengthening food ++
Syzygium aromaticum (L.) Merr. and L.M.Perry, Myrtaceae Cloves Al koronfol L Fb F: cooking spice for savory and sweet dishes +
Thymus vulgaris L., Lamiaceae Thyme Zaetar L Le M: tea for treating stomach diseases +
Trigonella foenum-graecum L., Fabaceae Fenugreek Al halba L Se F: cooking spice for savory dishes (esp. cous cous, lentils, breads); M: tea as a digestive aid, an anti-fever agent, an appetite stimulant, and for promoting lactation; seeds, powdered and made into a paste with water, applied directly to skin for treating blemishes ++
Zingiber officinale Roscoe, Zingiberaceae Ginger Skinjbir L Ro F: used in many savory dishes; F/M: in food it is considered able to treat colds and to have anti-inflammatory properties; M: used externally in massage oils; in tea with lemon for the prevention of colds and as an anti-fever agent +++
  1. Ap aerial parts, Ba bark, Bu bulbs, Fb flower buds, Fl flowers, Fr fruits, Le leaves, Re resin, Ro roots, Se seeds, Sg stigma, St stems, Tu tubers, Wo wood, Wp whole plant
  2. +, mentioned by less than 10% of the study participants; ++, mentioned by 10–39% of the study participants; +++, mentioned by at least 40% of the study participants