Weird, Wacky Veggies

 

You have probably been reminded to eat your vegetables. You may not like some of them, but they are perfect for you.

Veggies, like carrots, give your body an extra dose of carotene (which is good for your eyes and skin). Spinach is packed full of iron – great for building red blood cells – which makes you strong.

But did you know some odd veggies look like they’re from another planet?

These are not your ordinary peas and carrots!

Check out these weird, wacky veggies. Who knows? You may just want to try one…

Romanesco – Alien Invader?

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Romanesco is not really a vegetable that slipped off an alien’s plate. It is a type of broccoli from Italy. It’s bright green and has “florets” that are cone-shaped.

This weird-looking veggie is a cousin to the cauliflower and has a mild, sweet flavor. The Romanesco is also very dense, so one head goes a long way.

Fun Facts

  • The Romanesco likes a warm climate and grows as an alien plant might.  
  • It can get as tall as 3 feet (0.91 meters), so it needs lots of room.
  • The edible part of this vegetable develops at the bottom of the plant.

If you want to try this strange broccoli, it can be boiled and steamed. Add some butter, and you have a healthy side dish.  

Are you brave enough to try this new food?

Nopal – Watch Out for the Prickles!

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The Nopal plant is generally found in Mexico. The vegetable portion of this prickly cactus comes from the young, flat leaves or pads. The pads are around 6 inches long (15 centimeters). They can be purple or green and have many sharp thorns on them.

Fun Facts

  • To eat this plant, the skin must be carefully peeled away.
  • One slip and you may just get stuck by a pointy prickle or two.
  • The Nopal is popular in traditional Mexican food and is exported to other countries in cans, bottles or even powder form.

Are you familiar with the Prickly Pear?  This same cactus grows these weird fruits, as well.

If you like green beans, then you may just want the Nopal. It has a light, slightly tart flavor and can be crisp.

Are you brave enough to try the Nopal?  

Dulse – Comes From the Sea

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You have probably seen seaweed growing in the water. It is usually green and can be found floating in the oceans, lakes, and ponds. But have you ever thought of eating this slippery substance?  

Dulse is a red algae that grows in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans on the northern coasts. It is also called sea lettuce. It’s high in fiber and makes a unique snack food.

Fun Facts

  • Since this strange food grows underwater, it has to attach itself to kelp or a rock.
  • It can reach lengths of up to 19 inches long (50 centimeters) and 1.1 to 3.1 inches wide (3 to 8 centimeters)
  • Comes in colors from a deep rose to reddish-purple
  • Has a leathery feel rather than slimy.

Dulse has a strong taste and odor before it is dried. It can be eaten raw, cooked or dried and is high in protein and very good for you.  

Are you brave enough to try the Dulce?

Did You Eat Your Veggies Today?

Now that we have explored some of the weirdest vegetables on the planet, do you think you may want to try some? Or are you happy just sticking to the basics?

Even if you do not want to experiment with these veggies, it is important to get fresh vegetables each day.

Come back next week for more weird, wacky veggies!

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