Voodoo plants are one of the most popular ways to summon spirits, and it’s not hard to imagine the possibilities.
So what exactly does it mean to use a plant as a magic ingredient?
It all depends on what you’re doing, says Richard L. Oates, a plant ecologist at the University of Arkansas.
“A lot of people are very interested in magic and want to know more about the science of that,” he says.
So L.A.-based plant ecologists Oates and Richard A. Miller of the University in Oxford have been working on the subject for the past five years.
“The problem is, it’s hard to know what to do with those plants,” Miller says.
“So we’re trying to figure out what the science tells us, and then we try to make sure we can put them into our plant recipes, like using cilantro or mint or anything like that.”
But even when plant-based plants do make it into recipes, they often require additional training.
Miller says it’s often a question of which kind of plant and how many.
“Most people use an apple as a plant, because that’s easy to make,” he explains.
“But if you have more than one kind of fruit, you might want to go with something that’s not the most easy to grow.
So how do we figure out which plants are best suited to help us summon spirits? “
You might want it to be something that would help you get out of the kitchen or that would be a bit spicy,” he adds.
So how do we figure out which plants are best suited to help us summon spirits?
One approach is to look at the ingredients themselves.
Oakes and Miller recently conducted a survey of nearly 3,000 plants, looking for the ingredients that are the most commonly used in various plant recipes.
They found that the most common plant-derived ingredients were: cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, cardamom, ginger, rosemary and thyme.
So there are lots of ways to use them, even in plant recipes that use a lot of spices.
And they were also among the most frequently used in “traditional” recipes, such as those where the plant is used as an ingredient for a dessert or a cooking oil.
“There are a number of reasons why people use these plants,” Oates says.
In particular, the plant can act as a catalyst for healing.
“It has this ability to attract water to itself, to attract a plant to itself,” he points out.
So in this context, cinnamon can help bring the healing plant to its feet, and the herbs can help keep the plant hydrated.
“One of the reasons why we do this is to see if the plant’s the right plant for healing,” he continues.
“We’ve seen that when we put a lot more plants into a recipe that have a lot different components, they have more healing potential.”
The most commonly consumed plant-containing ingredient in the world?
And it’s used as a substitute for other plant ingredients, including cinnamon.
But that’s a topic for another time.
“For now, ginger is probably the most important ingredient in our plant-related recipes,” Miller adds.
In fact, the most widely consumed plant ingredient in Australia is also ginger.
“People often think of ginger as an aromatic herb, and when they hear that, they assume it’s the most aromatic,” Miller explains.
But it is not, he says, and so it’s usually used as flavoring.
“When people say that ginger is the most potent plant in the universe, that’s incorrect,” Miller continues.
In reality, the spice of ginger is not in the plant at all, but is the ingredient that gets added to the recipe.
And there are other spices that get added, too, including turmeric, cumin and coriander.
“This is an example of what we call the ‘green plant,'” Miller says, referring to the plant in which ginger is often found.
And although the plants are typically referred to as green, it actually comes from a group of plants called the “black and white” group, which are both of which contain different types of leaves.
“All of the plants we’re talking about are black, but all of the black-and-white plants have different types, so you have a whole bunch of different kinds of plants,” he notes.
So, in terms of flavor, the black and white plants can offer a lot that a traditional ginger can’t.
For example, turmeric can make the ginger stronger than it already is.
So if you’re looking for a green plant that’s been enhanced, ginger may be the one to look for.