Laurus nobilis is an aromatic evergreen tree or large shrub with green, glabrous leaves. It is in the flowering plant family Lauraceae. Bay leaves come from the bay tree, which is indigenous to Asia. The plant spread to the Mediterranean, where it was called a laurel tree. It's leaves constituted the wreaths of laurel that crowned victorious athletes in ancient Greece and Rome. The tonewood of the California Bay Leaf plant is much sought after by the makers of stringed instruments for making violins and guitars. The bay leaf is also a very good pest and bug repellent.
Bay leaves are a fixture in the cooking of many savory dishes in Asian, Middle east, European and Americas cuisines,. They are used in Rice preperations, soups, stews, brines, meat, seafood, vegetable dishes, and sauces. Bay leaves contain polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants. Some studies suggest that bay leaf may help inhibit the growth of breast and colorectal cancer cells. Bay leaf is able to reduce the amount of urease in your body thus keeping kidney stones at bay.