A Mediterranean herb with fuzzy, oval, gray-green leaves that are pungent and slightly bitter with a musty mint taste and aroma. Sage is a primary herb in poultry seasoning. Fresh sage is less bitter than dried sage, but both forms should be used lightly as it can easily overpower a recipe. Sage pairs especially well with fat-rich recipes and is believed to aid in their digestion. There is also a variety called pineapple sage, with an intensely sweet pineapple scent. Pineapple sage flowers can also be used as an edible garnish.
Season: available year-round
How to select: Fresh: Choose leaves that are aromatic with no soft spots, wilting or dry edges. Dried sage comes whole, rubbed (crumbled), and ground. Rubbed sage has a light, velvety appearance.
How to store: Fresh: Refrigerate wrapped in a paper towl and sealed in a plastic bag up to 4 days. Fresh sage can be frozen up to 1 year: Wash and dry the leaves, discard the stems, and pack loosely in freezer storage bags. Dried: Store in a cool, dark place up to 6 months in a closed container.
Matches well with: duck, eggplant, fish, game, goose, liver, peas, pork, poultry, ravioli, roasts, stuffings, tomatoes, tuna, veal, apple, cheese, beans