Thyme is native to Europe, North Africa and Asia. The herb is indispensable in European cooking as well as the traditional cuisines of the Caribbean and the Middle East.
Thyme has a strong flavour and pine-like aroma. Its strong flavour can handle gamey meats such as beef, venison and game birds, however its clean, invigorating aroma will also lift blander products such as chicken, fish and fresh cheeses.
Because it is so pungent, thyme is able to withstand lengthy cooking times, so it is an integral part of stocks, braises and soups. As thyme is one of the few herbs that actually becomes more pungent when dried compared to the fresh herb, care should be taken not to use too much in cooking. If the flavour is not as strong as desired, a little more can be added later.