Appears in
On Food and Cooking

By Harold McGee

Published 2004

  • About

Borage is a medium-sized Mediterranean native, Borago officinalis, with bright blue flowers and large, fuzzy leaves that have the distinct flavor of cucumber, thanks to enzymes that convert its fatty acids into the same nine-carbon chain (nonanal) produced by cucumber enzymes. It was once a common ingredient of mixed salads (see the recipe). Plants in the borage family accumulate potentially toxic alkaloids, so borage should be eaten in moderation.