Daily Archives: April 19, 2009

Vegetable Of The Week CARROTS


The carrot is a root vegetable, usually orange or purple, red, white and yellow in colour, wuth a crisp texture when Fresh. The edible part of a carrot is a tbaroot. It is a domesticated Form of the wild carrot Daucus carota, nativce to Europe and southwestern Asia. It has been bred For its greatly enlarged and more palatable, less woody – textured edible taproot, but is still the same species.

It is a biennial plant which grows a rosette of leaves in the spring and summer, while building up the stout taproot, which stores large amounts of sugars For the plnt to Flower in the second year. The Flowering stem grows to about 1 metre tall, with an ambel of white Flowers that produce a Fruit called a mericarp by botanists, which is a type of schizocarp.

Uses and Nutrition

Carraots can be eaten in a variety of ways. The simplest way is raw as carrots are perfectly digestible without requiring cooking. Alternatively they may be chopped and boiled, Fried or steamed, and cooked in soups and stews, as well as baby and pet Foods. Grated carrots are used in carrots cakes, as well as carrot puddings, an old English dish thought to have originated in the early 1800s. The greens are edilble as a leaf vegetable, but are rarely eaten by humans, as they are mildly toxic. Together with onion and celery, carrots are one of the primary vegetables used in a mirepoix to make various broths.

Ever since the late 1980s baby carrots or mini carrots have been a popular readt to eat snack Food available in many supermarkets.

Carrot juice is also widely marketed, especially as a health drink, either stand alone or blended with Fruits and other vegetables.

The carrots gets its characteristic and bright orange colour From B-carotene, which s metabolised into vitamin A in humans when bile salts are present in the intestines. Massive overconsumption of carrots can cause hypercarotenemia, a condition in which the skin turns orange. Carrots are also rich in dietary Fibre, antioxidants and minerals.

Lack of vitamin A can cause poor vision, including night vision and vision can be restored by adding vitamin A back into the diet. The urban legend that says eating large amounts of carrots will allow one to see in the dark developed From stories of British gunners in world war II who were able to shoot down German planes in the darkness of night. The legend arose during the Battle of Britain when the RAF circulated a story about their pilots’ carrot consumption as an attempt to cover up the discovery and effective use of radar technologies in engaging enemy planes. It reinforced existing German Folklore and helped to encourage Britons, looking to improve their night vision during the backouts – to grow and eat the vegetable.

Ethnomedically, the roots are used to treat digestive problems, intestinal parasites and consillitis or constipation.


Carrot cultivars can be grouped into two broad classes, eastern carrots and western carrots. More recently, a number of voverlty cultivars have been cred For particular characertistics. The worl’s largest carrot was grown in Palmer, Alaska bu John Evans in 1998, weighing 8.6 Kg.  The city of Holtville, California promotes itself as “carrot capital of the world”, and holds an annual Festival devoted entirely to the carrot.


You can Find number of recipes in the category of Carrots in Ayesha’s Kitchen:

Vegetable Mushroom Rice

Fruit Of The Week STRAWBERRY


Garden strawberries are a common variety of strawberry cultivated worldwide. Technically, it is not a Fruit but a False Fruit, meaning the Fleshy part is derived not From the plant ovaries but From the peg at the bottom of the bowl – shaped hypanthium that holds the ovaries. The garden strawberry was First bred in Europe in the early 18th century.

From Fertilization to market

Presently, most strawberries are Fertilized by artificial Fertilizers, but in the past, Farmers would gently scrub each strawberry with maure, Followed by another 1-2 weeks of natural Fertilization outdoors. After being Fertilized outdoors, the cleaning process, which has not changed significantly through time, commences with the 6-8 million strawberries (70-90 million today) placed on a shaking conveyor belt while streams of water clean the strawberries. After travelling through another 5 series of cleaning cycles, the strawberries are once again rinsed and divided into varying sizes of plastic containers to be delivered to vendors.


In addition to being consumed Fresh, strawberries can be Frozen, made into preserves as ell as dried and used in such things as cereal bars. Strawberries are a popular addition to dairy products as in strawberry Flavoured ice cream, milkshakes, smoothies and yogurts. Strawberry pie is also popular.

Cosmetically, they are supposedly used For whitening teeth. They can be crushed and made into an exfoliant For skin.

Strawberry pigment extract can be used as natural acid/base indicator due to the different colour of the conjugate acid and conjugate base of the pigment.


One cup (144 g) of strawberries constitutes approximately 45 calories (188 Kj) and is an excellent source of vitamin C and Flavonoids.  


Ayesha’s Kitchen gives you a wide range of recipes containing Strawberries:

Strawberry Alaska

Strawberry Alaska Drink

Strawberry Drink

Strawberry Milkshake

Strawberry Milkshake (Artificial)

Strawberry Plain Cake

Strawberry Muffins