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Old 09-19-2005, 06:45 PM   #1
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Bay Leaf

I just cut down a 15 ft. bay leaf tree. Bay leaves are widely used throughout the world. It may be best known in bouquets garnis or used similarly in soups, sauces, stews, daubes and courts-bouillon’s, an appropriate seasoning for fish, meat and poultry. Bay leaf is often included as a pickling spice. Bay leaves and berries have been used for their astringent, carminative, diaphoretic, digestive, diuretic, emetic and stomachic properties. Bay Oil, or Oil of Bays (Oleum Lauri) is used in liniments for bruising and sprains. In the Middle Ages it was believed to induce abortions and to have many magical qualities. It was once used to keep moths away, owing to the leafs lauric acid content which gives it insecticidal properties.

But is it ok to use in the pit?
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Old 09-19-2005, 06:48 PM   #2
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Wow Mike, I never knew all that about Bay Leaves! Thanks for the info, I don't know about using them in the pit though.
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Old 09-19-2005, 08:31 PM   #3
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Mike, I have been emailing people all over the USA concerning the toxicity of various wood smoke. I have had no response. Many trees are very toxic if the wood dust is inhaled or leaves, flowers, bark, twigs, or roots are ingested, yet the smoke is OK for curing meat. Even oak acorns will cause liver damage over a long period of time and the dust from oak and mesquite causes severe alergic reactions in many people, Go figure. I have asked questions of the Texas A&M Ag dept as well as several state and federal forestry services and got no response. Guess where on our own. However if we can use herb branches and grapevines for smoke I would think bay would be fine. We need serious BBQ research!!! I want federal funding for my new pit.
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Old 09-20-2005, 06:03 AM   #4
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Dang zilla, that was a good response. Mike, I'd be wary about it.
If you find anything conclusive, please let us know.
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Old 09-20-2005, 06:06 AM   #5
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There's a post by Chris on TVWBB that says it's ok.
http://www.virtualweberbullet.com/woods.html
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Old 09-23-2005, 09:01 PM   #6
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Bay is very distinctive when used as smokewood, like sassafras and pimento are. Be sparing till you know if you like it or not.

if you're certain you have Laurus nobilis you're good to go. Several other laurels are toxic.
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Old 09-25-2005, 12:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Kruger
Bay is very distinctive when used as smokewood, like sassafras and pimento are. Be sparing till you know if you like it or not.

if you're certain you have Laurus nobilis you're good to go. Several other laurels are toxic.
Hmm.... sassafras !?!?! :-k
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Old 09-25-2005, 04:23 PM   #8
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I like sassafras. Some people don't like it but I usually find that that's when the wood quantity is excessive. I like it for some versions of fresh ham that I do.
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Old 09-25-2005, 07:00 PM   #9
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Why don't you bag the leaves and sell them on Ebay?
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