Parsley is a common seasoning and garnishing herb that seems an essential ingredient in the preparation of traditional cuisines. But when we talk about parsley, there’s two varieties come into our minds, curly and flat or Italian parsley. So, is there any difference between these two varieties? Or what are curly parsley vs Italian parsley facts?
Can you use one variety to substitute another in your fine dinning dish? These are some questions that arise in our minds while selecting parsley for our particular dish. Therefore, we are here to tell you how curly parsley is different from flat leaf parsley? So, let’s start this debate.
Curly Parsley Vs Italian Parsley
The primary difference between both parsley kinds is the appearance and shape of the leaves. Appearance may be the first thing we notice while buying parsley or anything from a grocery store.
So, if you are in the grocery store and find different types of parsley place side by side, you can easily differentiate them on the basis of their outer look. Parsley with curly or rolled leaves is said to be curly parsley and parsley with flat leaves is characterized to be Italian parsley.
Secondly, the color difference of both kinds makes things easy to differentiate. Italian parsley leaves look dull green while curly parsley leaves are brighter and more vibrant to look.
Thirdly, flat leaf parsley is widely common as a flavor enhancer in various dishes. On the other hand, curly parsley is more on the garnishing side of dishes.
Curly parsley offers a more fresh, filled, and enjoyable texture to food recipes as compared to flat leaf parsley.
Besides the above differences, they have different flavor profiles and uses in different food recipes. So, let’s discuss them in detail.
Italian Parsley Is More Flavorful Than Curly Parsley
Italian parsley gives your dish a clean, fresh, and strong herbaceous flavor. Its flavor seems to be a combination of clove, peppery, citrus, and nutmeg taste hints. It works the same as other seasoning herbs such as cilantro, basil, or oregano.
In comparison, curly parsley is milder in flavor than its flat leaf cousin. When young, it has a grassy mouthfeel while it becomes slightly bitter to taste when old or wilted.
Its texture shines more brightly than its characteristic flavor tone. Therefore, it finds its applications as a garnishing herb in different cuisines and savory treats.
In short, you must buy flat leaf parsley whenever you want to add a new flavor and mouthfeel to your beloved recipe.
Where Should Curly And Flat Leaves Be Used
As you know that flat leaf parsley has a stronger flavor, so it suits all savory recipes that have intense flavor. For example, it goes great in Italian dishes like meat recipes, green sauces, and baked items.
While dealing with Italian parsley, you need to balance out its flavor in the dish. Don’t overuse it in your savory dish as it will take your dish more towards herby flavor.
On the other hand, curly parsley is used to add pops of color to your iconic serving dish. Curly leaves with bright shine make the dish more appealing and appetizing. It pairs up greatly in French cuisines.
Can You Substitute Curly Parsley For Italian Parsley?
The debate of curly parsley vs Italian parsley becomes more controversial when it comes to the substitution of both types.
Many people consider that it’s the flat leaf variety that can give both flavor and attractive look to food recipes. However, others consider that curly parsley seems more suitable and looks vibrant in various food dishes.
But the truth is that curly parsley can also round off the overall taste of the dish like flat leaf depending upon the age of the plant. The younger leaves are more flavorful and can replace Italian parsley but you have to add more curly leaves for this substitution.
The additional advantage of using curly leaves is that it adds a more enjoyable and attractive texture to the food dish. Moreover, it can go long without wilting and thus remains fresh to be used in multiple savory treats.
In the other case, you can also use Italian parsley for curly leaves to decorate or garnish your fine dinner. But you have to use fewer parsley leaves to replace curly parsley in the dish keeping the overall flavor of that dish unchanged.
What If You Have To Use One Parsley Type For The Other?
As we know that curly parsley cannot replace flat leaf parsley when it comes to flavor and aroma. But, if your dish calls for Italian parsley and you don’t have it on your hand, you can use curly parsley.
For the substitution of Italian parsley, use a double quantity of curly leaves in your dish to get the almost similar taste as flat leaf parsley does. It gives your dish color, flavor, and fresh texture with an extra punch of taste hints.
Similarly, you can also use flat leaf parsley for curly whenever curly parsley gets short in your kitchen. To mimic natural tone, use half quantity of Italian parsley to make your dish extra special.
Read Also: Can You Eat Raw Parsley?
In curly parsley vs Italian parsley debate, you learn that these two varieties are not totally resemble each other. They are different in their outer look, leaf shape, flavor, and texture.
Moreover, both parsley varieties have different color shine and uses in food dishes but you can substitute one type for another type smartly. So, never stop making your favorite dish just because of the unavailability of ingredients. Let your creativity come into play and explore the new world of taste and flavor.