It’s Spring, so that means it’s officially time for asparagus even though it seems there is rarely a time that it isn’t available at the grocery store. It’s probably one of our favorite vegetables, so often in the “green & healthy” rotation around here for one meal or another if the price isn’t too crazy. Most often, I saute it simply in olive oil with onion or shallots, a bit of garlic and lemon zest. We bake it, grill it, enjoy it in soup, frittatas, omelettes, salads, and more often without hollandaise than with it.
As much as I pride myself on knowing quite a bit about the vegetables I enjoy, I was surprised to find out even more.
Ten Things: Did you know that:
#1 asparagus is grown in the US states of Washington, Michigan, Illinois, New Jersey and California (which grows 80% of the nearly 200 million lbs. of the US crop). Otherwise, it’s grown extensively in Mexico, Peru, and China.
#2 it can grow as much as 10″ in 24 hours and that size does matter (the thicker the spear, the better the quality). The writer takes no responsibility for any connections the reader might make which are of a sexual nature. *snort*
3# asparagus contains glutathione (GSH) which happens to be the most powerful detoxifier in the body.
#4 the average American eats between 1-2 lbs. of asparagus per year as compared to 18.5 lbs. tomatoes.
#5 ancient Greeks and Romans thought asparagus might relieve a toothache or prevent a bee sting.
#6 asparagus contains rutin, a bioflavonoid vital to capillary strength and increasing circulation in the lower limbs.
#7 asparagus is a super source of folacin which helps not only with the duplication of cells, but growth and repair.
#8 it is a member of the lily family.
#9 after the asparagus harvest, the spears grow into ferns with red berries.
#10 asparagus is better suited to be grown locally more than any other vegetable.
Have you ever tried asparagus raw? It’s my new favorite way to eat it.