If you’ve eaten tapioca pudding, you’ve eaten this vegetable. It’s hard to believe but there is a vegetable used as the foundation of this dessert. There are some more interesting facts to learn about the yucca plant.
In ancient times flowers and all manner of plants were eaten, enjoyed, and found to be beneficial to one’s health. As society moves away from farming some of the knowledge is not being passed on and we are losing a valuable part of our diet. Sadly it is being replaced with fast food and processed food. Oyr lifestyles are contributing to obesity and a variety of health issues. Isn’t it time we returned to eating healthier?
The Yucca plant has long been sold as supplements in health food stores. It graces our yards with its beauty, but it can also be beneficial to our health. This plant has edible roots and flowers.
Flowers at a florist are not suitable for eating.
We should take care that we do not eat those that have been treated with pesticides or other harmful chemicals.
Old Fashioned Living advises gathering the flowers early in the morning when they are fresh after the morning dew. Place them in first in ice water then gently rinse in a salt water solution. Place in the refrigerator in water until ready to use. Flowers can be floated in an ice cube tray for a delightful edition to cold drinks, tossed into salads, a multitude of dishes, and used as a garnish.
For a list of edible flowers visit the above linked site.
If you have eaten tapioca pudding, you have eaten yucca. The inside of the tuber is ground and becomes an ingredient in this tasty pudding. What else should we know about the yucca plant?
Some interesting facts about the yucca plant are:
- It goes by the names manioc, cassava or yucca
- In the U.S. we know it as a long tropical vegetable; a tuber with rough brown skin
- It can be boiled and mashed like potatoes
- It is the number two vegetable only after the potatoe
- It is used for a roasted flour called farinha de mandioca in parts of Brazil
- Evidence has been found to indicate it was eaten in Ecuador 4,500 years ago.
- It is used to make noodles and pastries in Thailand
- It is baked into crunchy chips in India.
- It is loaded with iron, magnesium, and vitamin C.
- Because of its large content of vitamin C it assists in easier absorption of iron.
- Out of several tested vegetables which are known to assist in lowered cholesterol levels. The yucca tested higher. LDL levels for participants who ate cassava daily for two weeks dropped significantly.
- The yucca plant has been used to treat colds and viral infections.
- It has been used to make poultices to relieve chills and fever
- In the Amazon it is used to treat sore muscles and
- Added to the bath to treat sterility in women
- It is helpful in preventing cataracts, cancer, and heart disease.
- It is a good source of fiber.
Instructions on preparing the cassava for eating are given in The Doctors Book of Food Remedies by the editors of Prevention:
To peel, first cut into 2 to 3 inch sections then slit the skin with a paring knife. There is an upper and lower layer which need slit. Grab the loose skin and remove it.
Slice each piece in half removing the tough fiber through the middle.
Place in a deep pot of cold water. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and cook about 20 minutes or until tender. Then prick with a fork (similar to a potato) and test for doneness. Drain and serve. Mash if desired. Eat alone or added to your favorite casserole or soup.
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