Thursday, July 14, 2016

Is kale still the new “it” vegetable? You bet it is!

By Michelle L. Dauberman

Kale has been a regular in our PSU MG Edible Demo Garden for years now but what’s keeping it around?

First off, kale is a member of the cabbage family, Brassica oleracea, and it is related to other cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, collard greens and brussels sprouts.  Not surprisingly then Kale shares their health benefits and it contains antioxidant (disease fighting), high fiber (digestion aid), high iron (great for the liver), calcium, and vitamin A (immune system aid).

As we all become more and more health conscious foods that have this kind of an impact on our overall systems are bound to stick around.

Secondly, kale is a beautiful addition to any vegetable or ornamental garden.  It is easy to grow and it comes in so many striking red, green, blue and purple hues that it’s sure to make a visual impact wherever it is planted.

Thirdly, kale makes a great chip!  Cut the main vein out of the leaf and then dice or tear what is left of the leaf into smaller pieces.  Drizzle these kale pieces/chips with olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes and voila, a healthy snack!

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Edible Flowers?!

By Michelle L. Dauberman

Yes, that’s right, edible flowers.  The folks in charge of the PSU Master Gardeners Edible Display Garden have added something fun to the garden this year:  A container full of plants with edible flowers.  With a special thank you to Clearview Nursery, who donated several of plants, here’s what you’ll find in our garden this year.

Anise Hyssop (Agastache ‘Blu Boa’)
Scented Geranium (Pelargonium spp.)
Nasturtium (Tropaelum majus)
Nodding Wild Onion (Allium cernuum)
Calendula (Calendula officinalis)

Give them a try in your garden today and for more inspiration here are a couple of quick and tasty recipes:

Anise Hyssop Tea
Steep 2 teaspoons of fresh or 1 teaspoon of dried flowers in a mug of hot water for 7-10 minutes.  Serve hot or cold.

Nasturtium Omelet:
Serves 1
                50g/2 oz tender runner beans
                2 eggs
                30ml/2 tablespoons milk
                2 nasturtium seeds
                2 young nasturtium leaves
                4 nasturtiums, petals only
                Freshly ground salt and black pepper, to taste
                15ml/1 tablespoon butter
Parmesan cheese, grated, to taste

For an additional blog on edible flowers  Grow, Then Eat your flowers