Western medicine can be traced back to the Hippocrates, a Greek physician who lived in the 4th century BC. Watercress pesto makes a delicious alternative to the traditional basil, adding a more subtle peppery flavour that combines excellently a variety of dishes while retaining the health benefits that come from consuming raw watercress. For more recipe inspiration check out www.watercress.co.uk/recipes where you can search our full index or browse by category. It prefers to grow in water about 5cm deep[37] with an optimum pH 7.2[200]. The hot peppery taste comes from the mustard oil in the plant and its strong flavour stimulates the taste buds and digestion. That’s why the French call their watercress soup potage de santé or ‘healthy soup’. It is one of the oldest known leaf vegetables consumed by humans. Treating diabetes. It may also help in treating eczema, acne, and generally problematic skin. Watercress makes for a delicious base for salad recipes, like this Watercress, Radicchio, and Radish Salad pictured here. The parts that grow above the ground are used to make medicine. It helps lower blood pressure - Watercress contains high levels of nitrates. Happy cooking! Watercress is incredibly healthful and can be consumed or applied topically. I like to serve watercress with sea trout or salmon, where its refreshing flavour is the perfect complement to the rich tasting fish. Watercress is also used to treat tuberculosis. Hippocrates the ‘father of medicine’ opened what was probably the world’s first hospital near to wild watercress growing in a stream, so that he could use the watercress to treat his patients. I use the hot peppery leaves to add a kick to salads; their pungent flavour also makes flavoursome soups, sauces and flavoured butters and goes particularly well with eggs. This means a reduction in light induced oxidative damage, reducing the risk of age-related eye health degeneration. The distinctive pepperiness of watercress is perfectly offset by sweet fruit flavours so why not try adding it to your next smoothie? Curiously the peppery taste of watercress has a cooling effect, a paradox that was noted by the celebrated 14th century French chef Taillevent, who was also the first person to include it on a menu. Watercress is easily grown when given the correct conditions of slowly flowing clean water, preferably coming from chalky or limestone soils[264]. Watercress isn't just for salads. The nitrates in the vegetable promote heart health and may also enhance your physical performance. This compound, known as PEITC, can actually prevent tumours from growing and slows the spread of cancerous cells. Watercress, along with other nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables, can help naturally maintain healthy blood pressure levels. Here we’ve picked our favourite recipes that use watercress pesto for you to try at home. In fact watercress is one of the most nutritious vegetables and is a rich source of vitamins and essential minerals. Watercress contains calcium, magnesium and potassium, which help release sodium from the body and reduce high blood pressure levels. Like many other popular herbs, watercress is typically used for culinary purposes. Watercress is unfairly looked over a lot of the time – this peppery, mustardy green is incredibly versatile, lending a lovely fresh flavour to salads, soups, stews and plenty more. A simple watercress dip makes a fantastic accompaniment to raw vegetables, bread, or any type of antipasti or mezze. Watercress is rich in isothiocyanates that may help prevent cancer and boost immunity. These create higher amounts of elasticity in the blood vessels and therefore reduce blood pressure. Watercress was so popular in the past that every spring it was sold tied it into bunches in Covent Garden by London street sellers. A simple cheese and watercress omelette is one of the most popular recipes in our online collection. Many dishes can be enhanced by the addition of a handful of chopped watercress, adding flavour and colour as well as the added bonus of its superb health benefits. Medicinal Uses . The watercress nutrition profile is low in calories yet high in fiber and vitamins A, K and C. It’s been linked to a number of health benefits and could potentially help protect against certain types of cancer, reduce blood pressure, decrease inflammation and promote bone health. Watercress is a rapidly growing, perennial plant native to Europe and Asia. It’s peppery taste from the glucosinolates make it a popular addition to salad greens. In fact, watercress was a key ingredient in the first ever sandwich! Studies show that 100g of watercress provides a quarter of the recommended daily amount of calcium which is needed to reach maximum bone density while growing. Szechuan pork, watercress & broccoli stir fry. Watercress has been used as a medicine since ancient times. These create higher amounts of elasticity in the blood vessels and therefore reduce blood pressure. In Germany watercress is eaten with meats, sausages and smoked fish. A small amount adds a large punch of flavor, making it a great alternative to salt. Here are five ways to put this classic British leaf to good use. All three varieties of leaves are tossed together in a classic vinaigrette made with lemon juice, Dijon mustard, and olive oil. 5. Watercress is in season from April to September and although it’s usually relegated to a measly garnish on the plate, I look upon it as a delicious and health-giving vegetable in its own right. Perfect with grilled fish and meat, eggs, or grilled vegetables, this versatile sauce can be served alongside almost any meal. It’s not a good idea to eat watercress found growing in the wild though, as it’s likely to be polluted and may carry liver fluke. Tastessence comes to your rescue and gives some substitutes which you can use in place of watercress. We’ve selected our favourite smoothie recipes here for you to try, or get creative and come up with your own! Watercress and garlic dip with king prawns. It improves eye health - Compounds lutein and zeaxanthin, found in watercress, help block blue light from reaching the retina. Subscription offer: save 44% and receive a brand-new cookbook. A Persian tradition was to feed it to their children to increase strength and stature. Here are our favourite recipes using chopped watercress to get you started. Use this peppery, slightly spicy herb to enhance salads, sandwiches, risottos, and more. Unfortunately, it is not easily available everywhere. Watercress contains the antioxidant alpha-lipoic acid. It slows skin aging - A compound found in watercress, ITC, can prevent the breakdown of collagen and elastin in the skin, and can even promote collagen growth, leading to younger, healthier and more elastic skin. Simply swap out your usual mixed leaves or rocket for a bag of watercress when you make your next salad, or follow one of our selected recipes: Many people add kale or spinach to their smoothies, but did you know that watercress can beat both of these ingredients for health boosting properties? Mayonnaise, olive oil, or even cottage cheese can be used as the dip’s base, with various recipes incorporating different ingredients that are simply blended together. Although its incredible health benefits are at their most potent when it is consumed raw, watercress can also be added into a range of hot dishes to add a delicious flavour as well as fantastic colour and texture. Mediterranean chicken skewers with watercress pesto. Roughly chop and add to buttery mash for a twist on a classic, or why not stir through a pasta sauce? It is considered as a superfood as it has a high amount of nutrients with low calories. Watercress is also a good source of calcium, which further supports bone development and strength. When it comes to dips and dressing, use watercress the same way you would your favorite fresh herb. It is used in various salads, soups, and also as a garnish. In this article I will reveal to you the different medicinal applications of watercress. As you can see, one cup (34 grams) of watercress provides over 100% of the RDI for vitamin K, a fat-soluble vitamin necessary for blood clotting and healthy bones (4). Here are just some of the reasons why adding plenty of watercress into your diet can improve your health: It helps fight colon and breast cancer. Daily intake of Watercress significantly reduces DNA damage to White Blood cells. Uses for Watercress. It contains 13 amino acids, the B-complex vitamins, vitamins A, C, and the following minerals: - calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, … Watercress is heavy in antioxidants, a key ingredient in the prevention of cancer. The perfect egg and watercress sandwiches. Cultivated watercress is grown on washed gravel and nourished with pure fresh spring water. Used externally, watercress is one of the best existing vulneraries. Watercress gazpacho with manchego croutes. I use the hot peppery leaves to add a kick to salads; their pungent flavour also makes flavoursome soups, sauces and flavoured butters and goes particularly well with eggs. The regular consumption of watercress can help improve your bone health, fight infections, improve your skin and hair, improve your heart health among various others. Watercress can help with respiratory illnesses as it is an expectorant, antibronchitic, antiviral, antipyretic and a general tonic. Watercress sandwiches are another traditional British classic. It can even help with weight loss, as evidenced by Liz Hurley’s watercress soup diet. Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes Foraging Courses. Autumn Courses. The hollow stems of … Watercress is in season from April to September and although it’s usually relegated to a measly garnish on the plate, I look upon it as a delicious and health-giving vegetable in its own right. Medicinal use of Watercress: Watercress is very rich in vitamins and minerals, and has long been valued as a food and medicinal plant. 1. Carol Wilson celebrates the unique taste of this versatile seasonal vegetable. Watercress is a plant. Other nutrients in this veggie can help prevent osteoporosis and aid diabetes treatment. Also, he says, vitamin K is a key nutrient in bone density and watercress is a vitamin K powerhouse. My favourite way of enjoying watercress is in a sandwich made with good quality bread generously spread with butter and packed with plenty of crisp, fresh watercress. Watercress health benefits includes preventing breast cancer, offers a rich supply of vitamin C necessary for brain tissue repairs, boosting immunity, lowering blood pressure, improving thyroid gland function and preventing iron deficiency. History of Watercress as a Healing Food. Cress is one of the very low-calorie green leafy vegetables (only 11 calories per 100 g raw leaves) and contains negligible amounts of fats. Watercress mash with spring onion and cheese. Buyers ate the bunches from their hands, rather as we would eat an ice cream cone! Benefits of watercress include the ability to naturally lower blood pressure. The 4th Earl of Sandwich John Montagu is believed to have invented the snack, with the first ever creation containing cold roast beef, horseradish and watercress between two slices of bread. Providing a quick, delicious and nutritious meal, any omelette can be enhanced by the addition of a handful of fresh watercress. Watercress is a popular food among common masses. Watercress is an incredibly versatile ingredient that can be used in thousands of recipes. Regulate Thyroid; Watercress also contained a lot of iodine, which is very beneficial to regulate the amount of thyroid hormone. He prepared a lavish banquet and served watercress after the fourth course, writing on the menu ‘Watercress, served alone to refresh the mouth’. Watercress is known for its peppery taste and numerous health benefits. Back to hedgerow guide. Considered a cleansing herb, its high content of vitamin C makes it a remedy that is particularly valuable for chronic illnesses. Watercress also contain lots of vitamin C and smaller amounts of vitamin E, which like vitamin A, have antioxidant properties. The juice or tea of Watercress is used to eliminate collected fluids in the body tissue such as congestion and gout. Watercress omelette with watercress and Stilton. It may seem obvious but watercress is the perfect base for any salad, adding crunch, a peppery flavour, and a vibrant dark green colour. Watercress’ Other Health Benefits. In China, the soup of watercress to cure canker sores on lips or tongue, mouth blisters, bad teeth, swollen gums and foul breath. Remember that you can buy watercress from the bagged salad section of your local supermarket. Antioxidants. It can help cure any problems that occur in the skin. The same thing goes for watercress. Studies have shown that a chemical compound found in watercress interferes with a critical protein in cancer development. A classic watercress sauce is an absolute must have in any cook’s repertoire. And after one has stopped growing, calcium is needed to maintain bone density. Although [3] watercress was demoted and used as a mere type of decoration, recent health trends and studies have revealed the plethora of health benefits the leafy green possess. It is a dark, leafy green grown in natural spring water. Watercress is used in a variety of traditional Chinese recipes, most commonly stir fried or added to soups. We can all agree that watercress makes for a lovely garnish, but it would be tragic to limit this plant’s use to something so trivial. Now watercress gets to enjoy its time in the limelight as an excellent, nutrient-packed, easy-to-cultivate superfood. Watercress and many of its relatives, such as garden cress, mustard, radish, and wasabi, are noteworthy for their piquant flavors. This aquatic plant has been used as a supporting medicine not just to remedy ailments but also to take out toxic compounds from the body. To help you incorporate this Super Salad into your diet, we have selected our recommended top ten ways to eat watercress along with some delicious recipe ideas for inspiration. Traditionally, watercress has long been used to treat a number of ailments, with claims that it can improve blood circulation (Matsushima et al., 2006) for the treatment of renal colic, liver diseases (Guarrera et al., 2005) as a mild stimulate, a diuretic, an expectorant and a digestive aid. Traditional watercress soup has long been a staple on the menu of top restaurants throughout the UK and Europe, with recipes readily available online from Gordon Ramsay and Raymond Blanc as well as home-cooking legends Mary Berry and Delia Smith. Young leaves contain less mustard oil and so have a milder flavour. Watercress suggested uses include bronchitis, cough, appetite stimulant, and arthritis.. Watercress is only proven effective for bronchitis and cough. Store it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to four days. Beer 52 exclusive offer: Get a free case of craft beer worth £24. Medicinal Uses. … A generous handful could be added to any supermarket prepared stir fry for extra flavour and goodness, or why not stir fry a whole bag of watercress with garlic and ginger for a delicious Oriental side dish? Different methods can be used depending on the type of dish you are preparing, so check out these different variations and let us know which is your favourite! Vitamin A in Watercress aids in proper functioning of Immune System. This ability is conferred mainly by the existence of two components that have antiseptic and healing or regenerative properties for skin: ascorbic acid or vitamin C and zinc. Watercress is a good source of lutein and beta-carotene, two important components in preventing UV-damage and maintaining skin health, which is key to an anti-ageing regime. Magazine subscription – save 44% and get a cookbook of your choice. Pliny, who lived from 23-79AD listed over 40 medicinal uses for watercress, and included the belief that the smell of watercress would drive away snakes and neutralize scorpion venom! Since early times, the herb has had many uses. For the same reasons, these greens often recommended in the cholesterol controlling and weight reduction programs for their overall antioxidant, low-calorific and low-fat properties. It helps lower blood pressure - Watercress contains high levels of nitrates. Watercress contains iodine and high levels of vitamin K so should be included in your diet although it must be cooked when found in the wild. It improves eye health - Compounds lutein and zeaxanthin, found in watercress, help block blue light from reaching the retina. Along with vitamin A, vitamin C, protects the eye, helps maintain the skin and promotes healing of wounds, burns, the restoration of the bones or tendons, etc. watercress can beat both of these ingredients for health boosting properties, watercress was a key ingredient in the first ever sandwich, Watercress mash with spring onion and cheese, Maddie’s Table Watercress & Rosemary Mash, Hanna Sillitoe's Minty Pea & Watercress Soup. Watercress, mango and pineapple smoothie. I’m all for using seasonal British foods. Watercress can also be added to other soup flavours such as butternut squash or leek and potato, or blended into gazpacho to add a fantastic peppery flavour. Apart from the issue of food miles, eating foods grown on our doorstep is much better for us, as they’re more in tune with nature and are tastier and fresher. Landscape Uses:Container. 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