Plants have been used by humans for countless purposes for millions of years. Investigating the benefits and properties of each plant species is one of the most surprising discoveries that we can learn from nature.
Either as part of cooking recipes, or as a medicinal contribution or ornamental element in orchards and gardens, plants are part of our day to day. Among them the purslane stands out (Portulaca oleracea), which, since ancient Greece, was considered one of the most beneficial plants for human health. Although at that time it was widely consumed, today it has been losing importance in the culinary and medicinal fields, since more and more people were unaware of its properties when considering it a weed.
In this interesting article by Ecologist Verde you will learn all about the purslane plant: properties and what it is for.
The purslane or cat's tonguePortulaca oleracea) It is one of the edible and medicinal plants that provide the most benefits to those who consume it. It is a succulent plant (plant with a large proportion of tissue that allows it to store large amounts of water) that lives throughout the year. It belongs to the vegetable family of the Portuláceas, reaches forty centimeters in height and its yellow flowers they open only and exclusively during daylight hours on sunny mornings.
They are native to India and the Middle East, as well as southern Europe, although at present it grows wild (that is, naturally and spontaneously) throughout the world, being considered a weed or weed in certain regions of the planet.
Purslane is known as a "superfood", that is, its nutritional values are of great excellence and among them the contribution of:
The main properties of purslane for health are:
Purslane is highly prized in orchards and gardens, where it appears as auxiliary plant and bioindicator of soil quality. Another use of purslane, although of less importance, would be in the ornamentation of gardens as a decorative plant. In these cases, the species used would not be wild purslane (Portulaca oleracea), but Portulaca grandiflora, whose large and showy flowers are a good complement to the showiness of the garden. It should be noted that this ornamental species is not edible and, therefore, does not have any associated medicinal use.
However, the main use of wild purslane is for culinary and medicinal purposes. When used as a culinary supplement, purslane is a great source of fiber, omega 3, calcium, iron and magnesium. On the other hand, as for the medicinal uses of purslane, which human beings have taken advantage of since ancient Greece, highlights its help to:
From the purslane plant we can consume both its seeds and its stems, leaves and flowers. This complete use of the plant allows it to be taken in various ways: in salads, sautéed or steamed, marinated in vinegar, in infusion (using the plant either dry or fresh), as well as in the form of smoothies or preparing flours with its seeds.
Next, we provide you with two simple recipes with purslane to get all the benefits of it easily and quickly.
About 20 grams of wild purslane leaves, half an avocado, a tomato, the juice of half a lemon, olive oil and salt are used to dress.
The salad is ready to serve and enjoy the nutritional benefits provided by all its ingredients, being a salad rich in fiber, vitamin C and folic acid.
For four people, about 150 grams of purslane leaves (washed and without the hard part of the stem), half an onion, half a teaspoon of garlic powder, oil and salt are used as ingredients.
Undoubtedly, it is a simple recipe that will not leave diners indifferent when tasting the tasty flavor of purslane cooked steamed. Also, here below you can see a video about this beneficial plant.
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