NATIONAL WEED APPRECIATION DAY
Did you know that some weeds are actually beneficial to us and our ecosystem? National Weed Appreciation Day is celebrated today and on March 28th of each year and it is a good day to learn more about weeds and their benefits.
Weeds have been used by humans for food and as a herb for much of recorded history. There are the weeds that are edible and nutritious while other weeds have medicinal value.
Do you remember as a small child the fun you had with dandelions? They actually serve many useful purposes. Dandelions are a food source for insects and certain birds. Humans eat young dandelion leaves and enjoy dandelion tea and dandelion wine. The Native Americans used dandelions to treat certain ailments. Nutritionally, dandelions contain a source of vitamin A and C, calcium, iron, and fiber.
There are also other edible and medicinal weeds, some of which include:
Yellow Dock/Burdock: The taproot of young burdock plants can be harvested and eaten as a root vegetable. Immature flower stalks may also be harvested in late spring, before flowers appear. The young stalk taste resembles that of artichoke. It is a good source of dietary fiber and certain minerals, including calcium and potassium. It is also used as a medicinal herb.
Lamb’s Quarter: (also known as goosefoot) The leaves of lamb’s quarter are excellent added to lettuce salads, or cooked and used as a replacement for spinach. Lamb’s quarter seeds our also edible. They are a good source of protein and vitamin A.
Amaranth: (also known as pigweed) Amaranth species are cultivated and consumed as a leaf vegetable in many parts of the world. Its leaves can be cooked and its seeds can be harvested and cooked the same as quinoa. The root of mature amaranth is a popular vegetable. It is white and usually cooked with tomatoes or tamarind gravy. It has a milky taste and is alkaline. It is high in vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, K, B6, calcium and iron, and the seeds are a good source of protein.
Purslane: is considered a weed in the United States, it may be eaten as a leaf vegetable. It has a slightly sour and salty taste. The stems, leaves and flower buds are all edible. Purslane may be used fresh as salad, stir-fried, or cooked as spinach is, and because of its sticky quality it also is suitable for soups and stews. It is a good source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants and is high in omega-3 fatty acids. Purslane can be found growing in all 50 states.
Dollarweed: (also known as pennywort) is an aquatic plant that thrives in wet, sandy habitat. It is native to North America and parts of South America. It can also be found growing as introduced species and sometimes a noxious weed on other continents. It is an edible weed that can be used in salads or as a pot herb.
Before using any weed as a food source, make sure it is correctly identified and that it is free of herbicides and pesticides. Research the safe edible part of each weed and find useful cooking and preparation tips.
Enjoy National Weed Appreciation Day.
NATIONAL WEED APPRECIATION DAY HISTORY
Our research was unable to find the creator and the origin of National Weed Appreciation Day, an “unofficial” national holiday.
NATIONAL SOMETHING ON A STICK DAY
Celebrated on March 28, it is National Something On A Stick Day! Today is a food holiday that lets you use your creative talents. Once you get started, the possibilities are endless. Foods that comes on a stick are fun and easy to eat.
The most common one that we all think of is the Popsicle, fudge bar, ice cream bar or any of that type of frozen treat. Next on the list might be the corn dog or the caramel apple and of course the lollipop. Also, as summer nights are drawing near, we might hunger for roasted marshmallows on a stick. Of course we must mention, one of the newest popular treats on a stick, and a favorite to many, is the cake pops.
Now that some of the regular ones have been mentioned, get inventive and make up some ones of your own. How about a pear on a stick, meat and cheese squares, brownie bites and marshmellows, fruit and chocolate kabobs or a waffle on a stick? Have a very creative breakfast, lunch and/or dinner and fun with the day!!
NATIONAL SOMETHING ON A STICK DAY HISTORY
Our research failed to find the creator and the origin of National Something On A Stick Day, an “unofficial” national holiday.
NATIONAL BLACK FOREST CAKE DAY
March 28th celebrates a food holiday known as National Black Forest Cake Day. Black Forest cake is the English name for the German dessert Schwarzwalder Kirschtorte, meaning “Black Forest cherry torte”.
Most often, the Black Forest cake is made of several layers of chocolate cake with whipped cream and cherries between each layer. The cake is then decorated with whipped cream, maraschino cherries and chocolate shavings. In some traditional recipes, sour cherries are used between the layers and a Kirschwasser (a clear liquor distilled from tart cherries) is added to the cake. In the United States, alcohol is usually not used, however, in Germany the liqueur is a mandatory ingredient otherwise the cake can not legally be sold under the Schwarzwalder Kirschtorte name.
To celebrate today, try one of the following, “tried and true”, Black Forest Cake recipes:
Remember to share!
NATIONAL BLACK FOREST CAKE DAY HISTORY
Our research was unable to find the creator of National Black Forest Day, an “unofficial” national holiday.
The cake is named after the specialty liquor(Schwarzwalder Kirschwasser) of the region of the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) mountain range in southwestern Germany.