At the beginning of this month I brought home a beautiful little bouquet of red watercress because it was on my list of seasonal produce to try in April. I’m not sure if I had ever tried watercress before but I am always game to try something new. So then, I just had to figure our what watercress is and what to make with it.
What is it?
First of all, I found out quickly that it is similar to a sprout in look and texture. After reading a bit about it, I learned that watercress is the most ancient of greens as it can be traced back to Greek and Roman time. Watercress is often called a cancer-fighting superfood as it has immense health benefits as it contains significant amount of iron, calcium and folic acid, in addition to vitamins A and C. In comparison with other vegetables, watercress has more calcium than a glass of milk, more vitamin C than an Orange, and more absorbable iron than spinach. Another claimed benefit of watercress is that it is a stimulant, being a digestive aid and diuretic. Due to its high iodine content, watercress has a strengthening effect on the thyroid gland, being a benefit for those who suffer from a hypothyroid. Lastly, a random fact for you… when mixed with vinegar, it is said that watercress stops bleeding. WOW… who knew this relatively undiscovered green would be so good for me?!
The red watercress variety, pictured above, has a peppery bite and even more antioxidants than the average watercress.
What to make with Watercress?
- add to a sandwich or taco
- stir into pasta or grains
- puree in soup or use as a garnish in soup
- add into a quiche or scrambled eggs
Have you cooked with watercress before? What recipes have you made with this rich leafy green?