Bay leaves are a lie


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I always thought bay leaves were a lie too, and then I got some fresh-er ones than the 20 year old ones in my Mom’s cupboard… and I used too many bay leaves. If you don’t know what bay tastes like just add dozen fresh-er leaves to your tomato sauce… so so so bitter. Smelled great, but almost inedible.


Obligatory “Um, no, they aren’t a lie.” from J. Kenji López-Alt

:game_die: Would You LIKE to Play a Game? :video_game:

nice one.

also, homemade bay rum aftershave is awesome. it’s pretty much bay leaves, rum, and some citrus for the citrusy notes. the bay definitely comes through.


I second the nope, they aren’t a lie. Quick way to clear your sinuses-- roll up a fresh bay leaf and put it in your nose. Or, for normal people that want to know what a bay leaf smells like-- walk under a bay tree.


What does a bay leaf taste like?

Me: Goes outside, picks a leaf off the bay laurel and puts it in my mouth.

Suddenly faced with and overpowering flavor. In fact, it is so strong I have to spit it out.
Are you sure you’ve actually tried the real stuff?


What does a bay leaf taste like? Nothing. What does a bay leaf smell
like? Nothing. What does a bay leaf look like? A leaf. How does a bay
leaf behave? It behaves as a leaf would, if you took a leaf from the
tree outside of your apartment building and put it into your soup.


OK, so, bay leaves you can buy in a store are a lie.

What does a bay leaf taste like? Nothing. What does a bay leaf smell like? Nothing.

Subtasters unite!


uh, no, they’re not. They’re delicious in rice, they taste peppery and floral. Maybe you don’t have taste buds?


Is this the opposite of super-tasters?
(side note: being raised by a super-taster who a) hated cooking and b) was British, led to some very very bland meals)


Here in N CA I can find em fresh and they are MUCH more intense than the dried in a jar leaves. Dried bay leaves have a distinctive flavor, but to say they add nothing is (wait for it) bullshit. Dried rosemary loses a ton of its flavor, but they are both yum. I can also harvest many pink peppercorns from local trees.


And why does the leaf left in a soup always end up in my bowl?!?!?!


I assume. I just made it up.




Well, that was kind of a waste of time reading. Of course, I knew that considering my mother-in-law has a bay laurel in her yard and I have a few leaf filled branches hanging in my kitchen where I can smell them as I walk by the kitchen door and they smell and taste great in soups and chicken stock and I have a bottle of home made bay rum aftershave in my bathroom made from fresh leaves.


i was happy to see that kenji and i were of a like mind on this one. the thing that is BS is that article!


While bay leaves are not a lie pink peppercorns don’t taste good, are not pepper and are poison.
You can also hunt snails in your neighborhood. Same thing as comes in a can and better than pink peppercorns in many ways.


Also a lie? Colors. I mean if colors were real I’d be able get that color test chart thing right and see all of the numbers written in circles. No way that could be just something I don’t see but other people do.



Anybody with a working olfactory system who has ever even held a bay leaf can tell you how obviously nonsense this post is. Bay leaves are strong aromats.

What next? The cinnamon conspiracy? The nutmeg plot?