What’s So Great About Asparagus?

What’s So Great About Asparagus?

There are few things that say “Spring!”  more deliciously than asparagus.  The green spears’ ideal growing season are about 6 – 8 weeks in the spring and early summer. While you can probably find asparagus most of the year in large markets from far away places, it is never better – and closer – than right now.

Asparagus is a B powerhouse, containing B1(thiamin), B2 (riboflavin) B3 (Niacin) and B6 (pyridoxine).  The Bs are great activity boosters as they help convert food into energy, and critical for pregnant women to prevent neural tube defects. The Bs are water soluble vitamins, which means we have to renew our Vitamin B intake daily through the food we eat.

Along with the Bs, asparagus is a great source of fiber, and the A, C and K Vitamins. But what makes asparagus truly unique is that it contains inulin. (This miracle worker can also be found in things like leeks, garlic or artichokes.)  What’s the big deal about inulin?  When ingested, it doesn’t get broken down until it reaches the large intestine where it feeds the healthy bacteria that live there, (bifidobacteria, lactobacilli) promoting a healthy colon, and a healthy colon assists in maximizing food absorption and potentially reducing the risk of colon cancer.

All that, and my kids eat it. Happy Spring eating everyone!

A note on preparation:

To trim asparagus from its woody ends, do not use a knife. Gently bend the stem and allow it to break on its own.

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  1. Sara B
    April 26, 09:37 Reply

    I’m terrible with computers. This is the best I can do – post it right in the comment section. Let me know how you like it…

    Green Tuna Pasta

    I love this dish – one of my favourites while cleansing. Got me over horrifying memories of my sister’s ‘tuna casserole’. Adapted from a book I recommend to any client going through a food cleanse, elimination or candida diet. (Delicious Detox – Carol Morley ND)

    1 tsp sea salt
    10 ounces or 300 g dry brown rice fusilli or lentil fusilli or sweet potato fusilli
    1 tsp + ¼ cup olive oil
    ½ tsp chili pepper flakes
    1 bunch thin asparagus, cut into 2 inch pieces
    1 fennel bulb, cored, tops cut off, sliced
    ½ cup Parsley Pesto (see recipe below)
    1 can olive oil or water packed Albacore chunk tuna

    Bring water to boil, add salt, pasta and 1 tsp olive oil and bring to boil again.
    Cook according to directions on package, until chewy but not too soft.
    While pasta is cooking heat ¼ cup olive oil and chili flakes in a large saute pan over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add asparagus and fennel and cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Add parsley pesto, tuna chunks and a couple of Tbsp pasta cooking water. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook another 5 minutes.
    Drain pasta, add to saute pan, combine and heat 2 minutes.

    Parsley Pesto

    This is great on everything from fish or chicken to pasta to soup-topper

    2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
    ½ cup walnuts, toasted
    ½ tsp sea salt
    2 cups loosely packed, chopped, fresh parsley
    ¼ cup olive oil

    Put garlic, walnuts and salt in a food processor.
    Add parsley and process until finely minced.
    With machine running slowly add the olive oil in steady steam through the feed tube and process until the pesto is bended into a paste.

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