Who knew? (wait till you see what’s in my salad!)

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By: Leanne Ely

It’s time once again for Tricks, Tips and a Recipe. Today you’ll learn a tip, a trick and you’ll get a great recipe to try it out with. Neat, huh?

Today’s focus is on: NASTURTIUM FLOWERS

If you want to pretty up a plate of salad greens in a hurry, toss in a few edible flowers. One of the most common edible flowers is the nasturtium. Nasturtiums are both beautiful and delicious.

At first bite, nasturtiums have a slightly sweet flavor, but as you chew, they become spicy and taste almost like a radish. You can eat the entire plant, but the leaves and flowers are milder in flavor than the stems.

Nasturtiums are high in Vitamin C, and they also are believed to have medicinal properties equivalent to penicillin, helping the body to fight infections!

Nasturtiums thrive in most climates, and they are quite simple to grow. Adding a few of these pretty orange flowers to your garden will ensure that you have a beautiful edible garnish for your soups and salads all summer long!

Now, it’s time for your Trick:

If you want to grow nasturtiums this season, start them indoors now to give them a good start. Nasturtiums thrive in poor soil and they do not need fertilizer. In fact, fertile soil produces less blooms!

Your Tip:

You can make your own spicy vinegar with nasturtium flowers. All you need is a mason jar, a couple of cups of nasturtium flowers, some GMO-free white vinegar, a pinch of salt and a tiny bit of cayenne pepper. Put your flowers in the jar and cover with the vinegar and the spices. Let it steep for a week to ten days, and then strain and rebottle. This makes a great peppery dressing for your springtime salads.

And your Recipe:

Shrimp and Nasturtium Flower Salad with Avocado Dressing
Serves 4

Ingredients:
3 cups arugula
2 cups chopped kale, ribs removed
6 – 8 nasturtium flowers
1 medium cucumber, chopped
1 medium peach, pitted and cubed
16 large shrimp, peeled and deveined, cooked and chilled
1 medium red bell pepper, de-seeded, de-ribbed and chopped
2 large avocados, pitted, peeled and sliced
1/3 cup coconut cream
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 medium lemon, juiced
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce

Instructions:
In a large serving bowl, toss together arugula and kale; place nasturtiums flowers, chopped cucumber, cubed peaches, shrimp, and bell pepper on top. Set the bowl aside. In a medium bowl, smash together remaining ingredients (avocados through hot sauce) until smooth; drizzle this mixture over the salad and serve.

Snipping beautiful, richly colored nasturtiums into our salads can help to spice things up a bit and its fun for the kids to eat flowers! Join us on a fabulous journey of health and renewal (plus you’ll drop some pounds!) with our newest 30 Day Paleo Challenge—we’re just now getting started! The only thing missing is YOU!

Nasturtiums

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