eaten all over the world, arugula was barely known in the united states until a decade or two again. called rocket in england and rucola in italy (don’t ask), no matter where you’re eating it arugula has a trademark bitter and peppery flavor that your tastebuds won’t forget (for all the right reasons)
may – november
take me out + treat me right, iight?
• arugula varies in size, tenderness and bite. baby arugula are relatively soft and mild. make sure you pay attention to the seasons when picking the green: hot weather makes for hot leaves
• larger arugula leaves also tend to have a stronger flavor, so they can be cooked successfully without losing their taste – or, if you like their spicy flavor, use ’em raw
• usually sold in bunches with roots attached, look for dark green leaves with a uniform color. a little limpness is no problemo. avoid any yellowing, bruised or waterlogged leaves, though (ew)
• smaller leaves, which can be left whole, will look prettier than large leaves, which need to be cut apart to be manageable to manga
• arugula is very perishable, so don’t buy too much if you don’t plan on using it soon!
• to store, remove whatever device is holding the bunch together and pull out any over-the-hill pieces (sorry guys). wrap the roots in damp toweling, then enclose it all in a plastic bag. refrigerate for no more than a day or two. avoid storage near fruits – they can make the greens turn yellow.
• when you’re ready to actually use/eat the arugula here’s what to do: arugula leaves hide sand no matter how clean and perfect they may look. do not be tempted to rinse casually under running water. instead, cut off the roots, then swish ’em around in some lukewarm water. let them be for a sec, then lift them out of the water-filled bowl so the sand is left at the bottom. repeat as needed – usually two more times. spin-dry leaves, then gently wrap/roll in toweling (several layers of paper towels will do the trick), put in a plastic container, and chill until serving
♪ just eat it ♫
• arugula is typically served raw as a base in salads. due to its peppery taste, cut back the amount of pepper you use to season your salad (or completely nix it altogether)
• arugula can be lightly cooked, similar to spinach – it can be used in sautes, stir-frys, or added to soups. add it at the end to lightly wilt it, but beware: arugula has a stronger flavor and tougher, more fibrous texture than spinach. compared to raw arugula, the cooked greens have much less of a bite but develop a pleasant bitter-green depth
• try substituting arugula for basil the next time you make pesto for a nice, peppery kick
• a handful of arugula is a great addition in omlettes, smoothies, sandwiches and even baked potatoes (throw it on top!)healthy or nah?
• adding arugula to your meals helps boost your portion sizes without adding calories, since each cup of the greens contains a (crazy) 5 calories
• like other dark leafy greens, arugula provides a source of vitamin a in the form of beta-carotene. get that vitamin a, y’all: two cups of arugula gets women 41% of their recommended daily intake, and 32% for men. arugula also contains vitamin k; a 2-cup serving contains about half of the daily recommended intake for women, and 1/3 the recommended intake for men
• ever heard of vitamin b-9? well, arugula’s got it. a 2 cups of the stuff gets you 10% of your recommended daily intake . arugula has healthy levels of vitamin c, too
• arugula is a warming herb, so it can be an aid to clearing up lung and sinus congestion. it also is a natural alkaline, which can help to balance an over-acidic diet
• arugula contains chlorophyll, which has shown to be effective in blocking the carcinogenic effects of foods grilled at high temperatures
give it a whirl
• arugula salad with parmesan, lemon and olive oil
• arugula pesto pasta
• asparagus and arugula pasta salad
• arugula and carrot salad with walnuts and cheese
• fig-prosciutto pizza with arugula
• skirt steak salad with blue cheese
• arugula salad with fried gorgonzola
• chicken milanese with arugula
• roasted sweet potato, wild rice and arugula salad
• arugula salad with green apple and goat cheese