Parsley is too often overlooked as an ingredient in its own right and considered a garnish for many. This is a practice that dates back to Ancient Greece where parsley was sacred and used to adorn winners of sporting tournaments and decorate tombs of the dead. It might also be because parsley is a food stimulant. So if you have no appetite or aren’t feeling well, eating a little parsley could stimulate your hunger away.
Parsley packs a medicinal punch
Parsley punches above its weight nutritionally and is a herb with so many health benefits to boast. The most important of which can help all of us at this time of year is Vitamin C. Just four tablespoons – about half a bunch – could contribute just under half of the recommended daily allowance!
It’s also rich in iron which again is something I certainly need at this busy time of year to stop that burn out and sense of constant fatigue. Parsley tea is said to be a great way to boost your natural iron content every day. Personally I’m not a fan. It just tastes like hot weed water to me but if you want to give it a go, try one tablespoon of parsley to one mug of water. Boil away for five minutes, strain and drink. I tried adding honey but it still didn’t appeal! I wish it did because it’s an all round great drink because as well as the iron it’s good for calming your tunny down and stopping that bloating feeling which I always get at this time of year too.
Keep it raw for that smug, virtuous smile
To keep all the flavour and goodness from the parsley use it at the end of the cooking process or keep it raw.
Tabbouleh is one of my favourite virtuous and green dishes. It’s quick, easy and leaves you feeling all healthy and full. My versions are always different but for something really authentic try this one from Taste of Beirut.
My five minute virtuous wonder - Parsley Pesto
My personal, go-to, virtuous dish du jour is Parsley Pesto. It has a multitude of uses and is so quick to make.
I use it with pasta and add in another green vegetables like green beans or courgettes…
Over Christmas it served as a very lovely dip with Pretzels and was also perfect on top of some Turkish flatbread with goat’s cheese and pomegranates.