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I recently saw a recipe that called for Turkish Bay Leaves. Is this any different than the kind I would find in a standard spice bottle labeled "Bay Leaves", or is this a form of exotic marketing? Are there even different types of Bay Leaves?

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"Normal" Bay leaves... As opposed to "abnormal" bay leaves? j/k... ;-) –  Josh Sep 10 '10 at 23:13

3 Answers 3

According to The Spice House:

The flavor of these Turkish bay leaves is far milder and more complex than that of domestic bay; it adds a subtly sweet astringency to dishes. Only one or two are needed to enhance a whole roast, pot of soup or stew.

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I consider them "normal"; they're the oval-shaped bay leaves. There's a "California" bay leaf variety that has elongated leaves and a slightly different flavor. alt text

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

Figured I'd check the site of the brand I use. Turns out they are Turkish:

The bay tree is native to the Mediterranean region and Asia Minor. The bay or laurel tree grows well in the subtropics and is cultivated today as a spice in the Far East as well as the Canary Islands, France, Belgium, Mexico, Central America and Turkey (where McCormick's bay leaves are grown).

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