Monday, 18 September 2017

One day one photo - 18: Nasturtium

I have entitled this post "nasturtium", but in fact it can relate to other produce I have reaped from my garden and my allotment.

It's that time of the year when my crops are ready (even more than ready) to be harvested, and I have ended up with so much stuff I don't know what to do with it! Last year I had around eight pumpkins, and I only recently finished eating them!

This year I have had a number of courgettes - usually aroud four per week. There is also sweet corn to look forward to as well. I think I should have picked them already, but I haven't yet managed to get down to the allotment.

Some might say that having lots of produce is a nice problem to have, particularly as a packet of seeds for these crops only costs a couple of pounds. I realise I do have to get organised though.

Nasturtium has been the real star. Last Autumn, there was so much of the stuff that I didn't have to buy any salad for around two months, and that was even with me eating the stuff for lunch and for dinner, sometimes at breakfast too! Sadly I was not able to pull up the leaves quickly enough, and one day after we had a frosty night I woke up the following morning to find them all drooped, damaged, and inedible. That was a shame. This year, the challenge is to try to avoid that happening again, though it will be more of a challenge as I have had even more nasturtium grow. It's not just on one flower bed in my front garden, like last year, but also a few rows in my allotment too.

So I am really on the hunt for as many recipes as I can find. So far I have put them into a quiche, into a fish pie, and also had them as a salad. I also intend to make an alternative pesto with them.

Sadly I can't put them into a spiralizer like I have done with the courgettes, but I hope to find some equally exciting dishes to make with these leaves that some people dub a superfood, in the same vein as watercress. Apparently nasturtium is packed with vitamin C and it is a natural antibiotic. It can stop colds dead in their tracks!

Well, I haven't seen any randomised controlled trial done on that so I can't say for sure if that's true. I haven't had a cold though, despite most people in my office coughing and sneezing these days, so I will just take people's word for it.

As a cyclist (and runner)  who is going to have to battle the elements over the coming months, I think that I can't have too many superfoods, so anything that will help my immune system, and stop me from getting the dreaded lurgy will be a good thing.


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