Watercress

Watercress is a lovely plant. It’s small, delicate, peppery leaves can pack a surprisingly strong punch, and it’s amazingly versatile. You can cook with it – it makes a lovely spring or summertime soup, or sauce … or a riff on the traditional green pesto for pasta.

Alternatively, you can add it to salads, serve it washed and undressed as a side on a plate, sprinkle it atop an omelette or simply stuff it into an otherwise ordinary salami & cheese sandwich!

watercress & salami sandwich 1
Watercress, German salami and cheddar cheese sandwich on seeded sourdough from Gail’s Artisan Bakery (available in store at Waitrose)

Essentially, anywhere you would think of putting the equally delicate and peppery rocket (arugula) leaves, you can put watercress.

For such a small plant, it is an incredibly good one to have as a part of your diet. It is actually classified as a ‘superfood’ – it’s that packed with nutrients and vitamins! Actually, if you take watercress and analyse it on a gram-for-gram basis, you’ll find that it:

  • has more calcium than whole milk (!)
  • has more vitamin C than your typical orange
  • is a better source of vitamins  B1, B6, K & E and of the minerals magnesium, iron, manganese, calcium and zinc than pretty much any other plant food

This is due (in part) to that fact that watercress is generally eaten fresh, meaning that none of the nutrient value is lost in a cooking process.

Watercress is in season from Spring through to early Autumn in the UK (April to September). Make the most of it!

For some more ideas on how you can incorporate watercress into your kitchen, there are some specific recipes here.

 

 

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