In Spain I grew up eating sticks called palolu (from the spanish: palo dulce), and not just me, but all my friends as well. We would chew on them for hours, days with the ends slicking out of our mouths. Their nectar was potent, sweet and perfect. I decided that since I have a garden now, and I can plant whatever I want to plant I needed to find out what it really was that we were chewing on! I knew it as palolu, but it is known scientifically as Glycyrrhiza glabra. In Spain it is known as “the poor man’s licorice” and has an intense and woody black licorice taste. I now use it all the time, since at the Beanery (local coffee shop) they sell it all cut up into little pieces for infusions or teas. I drink that almost every night…but that stuff has been dried and isn’t as good to chew on, I want the real fresh stuff. So, I found some seeds…which is a little iffy…but I would love to have this memory to share with my boys.
Some things will always make me ache for my young days, for the free and careless days that I will never own again. All of my childhood memories are from Spain, and there are about 3 people that I can share them with without explaining it all out. Sometimes that gets to me, a sense of loneliness of unshared memories.
What brings you to your youth, smells, songs, games? I think I will do a full post on this including all my childhood memories….I can share them even if I need to explain them right!? I’ll let you know how my search for palolu goes!!!
Glycyrrhiza glabra plant