Carrots (Daucus Carota)WHAT ARE CARROTS? Carrots are a taproot, a type of root which grows downwards into the soil and swells. Carrots come in many sizes and shapes: round,cylindrical, fat, very small, long or thin. Native to Afghanistan, carrots were known to both the Greeks and Romans. In fact, the Greeks called the carrot "Philtron" and used it as a love medicine--making men more ardent and women more yielding. The Roman emperor Caligula, believing these stories, forced the whole Roman Senate to eat carrots so he could see them "in rut like wild beasts."India, China, and Japan had established carrots as a food crop by the 13th century. In Europe, however, they were not well known until well into the Middle Ages. At that time, doctors prescribed them for everything from sexual maladies to snakebite--which some would argue, are biblically connected. In Holland, the original red,purple, black, yellow, and white varietals were hybridized to today's bright orange, with its potent dose of beta carotene. From thence, carrots moved to England, during Elizabethan times. Some Elizabethans ate the roots as food; others used their feathery stalks to decorate their hair, their hats, their dresses, and their coats. Carrots arrived in the New World with the early colonists, but they were allowed to escape cultivation and subsequently turned into the omnipresent and delicate wild flower Queen Anne's Lace. If you doubt it, pull up a plant by the roots and surprise your nose with its carroty smell. The folk belief that carrots enable one to see in the dark--or at least improve vision--enabled the British Royal Air Force to disguise its use of radar from the Germans during World War II. The story goes that the Air Force bragged that the great accuracy of British fighter pilots at night was a result of them being fed enormous quantities of carrots--and the Germans bought it because their folk wisdom included the same myth. HOW ARE CARROTS PRODUCED? Fields are seeded with precision seeders from January into July. They take 6 to 21 days to germinate and 70 to 100 days to mature fully. Carrots are mechanically harvested by machines which pull carrots up by their tops, cuts the tops off and drops the carrots onto a conveyor leading to a trailers. They are also harvested by in machine which lifts the carrots with the soil then it shakes the soil out leaving the carrots which are then loaded into trailers. WHAT DO CARROTS LOOK LIKE WHEN I USE IT? Carrots are a common and popular vegetable to be eaten fresh. Baby carrots are particularly tender and juicy. They can also be canned or frozen. Carrot juice is a very nutritious drink especially high in beta-carotene. Carrots are used in baking in such delectable's as carrot cake or muffins. Carrots are rich in minerals and vitamins. WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE CARROTS LEAVE THE FARM? Carrots are harvested into large bulk trucks which take the product to on-farm packing operations. Upon arrival, carrots are unloaded onto a line where they are hydro-cooled, graded and packaged. They are held in cold storage or shipped to wholesale distributors as the market demands. Carrots can also be purchased with the tops on. These carrots are typically harvested at a younger stage and are usually hand harvested, then wrapped in bunches, resulting in "bunched carrots". WHAT CHALLENGES DO CARROT PRODUCERS FACE? Numerous root diseases affect carrots (black root rot, cavity spot), but proper cultural practices can keep them under control. Carrot fly are kept under control through an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program. Growers also face strong market competition from the western Europe WHO'S INVOLVED IN PRODUCING CARROTS? Producer Seed supplier Farm equipment supplier Agribusiness suppliers Processing plant NUTRITIONAL FACTS Serving Size: 1 medium carrot (78g) Calories 35 Calories from Fat 0 % Daily Value* Total Fat 0g 0% Saturated Fat 0g 0% Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 40mg 2% Total Carbohydrate 8g 3% Dietary Fibre 2g 8% Sugars 5g Protein 1g Vitamin A 270% Vitamin C 10% Calcium 2% Iron 0% *Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet. Interesting Fact About Carrots: The carrot is a highly refined version of a common weed, Queen Anne's lace. Both plants originated in the Middle East. Eat to Beat Breast Cancer New research has uncovered one reason why what you eat may protect you from breast cancer -- or put you at risk. Among a group of women with a family history of breast cancer, those who began eating more vegetables and less beef and pork had less damage to their DNA, the genetic material that controls the function of all your cells. Why DNA Is Key That's important because there's strong evidence that damaged DNA leads to cancer. The strongest protection came from cooked vegetables -- possibly because the vegetables we cook tend to be the most nutrient-dense ones, such as sweet potatoes, carrots, brussels sprouts, and, of course, broccoli (Journal of the American Dietetic Association, May 1998). A Veggie Rx For this study (the Women's Healthy Eating and Living Study), women were asked to eat five servings of vegetables, 16 oz of fresh vegetable juice, plus three fruit servings a day.
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Welcome to Brow Farm were we hope to show you some of the fresh vegetables, salads and root crops grown at Brow Farm. Why not have a look around this web site to see how we grow some of the food that ends up on your table. (Potatoes, carrots, wheat, lettuce, leeks, cabbage, onions, barley, broccoli, cauliflower, barley, oats, wheatgrass) and much more.

Celery (Apium graveolens var. dulce) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- There ought t'be some way t'eat celery so it wouldn't sound like you wuz steppin' on a basket." --Kin Hubbard, The Sayings of Abe Martin By contrast, Gertrude Stein, in Tender Buttons, inscrutably observed: "Celery tastes tastes where in curled lashes and little bits and mostly in remains. A green acre is so selfish and so pure and so enlivened." Native to the Mediterranean region and cultivated there for over 3,000 years, celery in its wild form is called smallage, and it is grown to this day for the flavouring of its seeds. The ancient Greeks called it selinon and regarded it as a holy plant. As such it is mentioned in Homer's Odyssey, dating from 850 BCE. Less known is that celery leaves were worn by the winners of the Nemean Games (just as bay leaves were worn by winning athletes at the Olympic and Pythian games): these games began in 573 BCE and were held every second year in the small southern city of Nemea in the Peloponnes, where Hercules achieved one of his great labours by killing the Nemean lion. Romans preferred eating sedan to using it ceremonially, but they still viewed it superstitiously, believing that it could bring bad fortune under certain circumstances. A member of the carrot family, celery is first recorded as a plant in France in 1623 and was probably developed either there or in Italy. Its seed was brought to Kalamazoo, Michigan, in the 1850s from Scotland, and it became a commercial crop there, grown by Dutch settlers. Celery consists of a bunch of petioles, or leaf stalks, rather than a main stem. Celeriac, or celery root, is the starch-storing lower stem of a special variety of celery and is commonly used as an esteemed marinated julienne first course of dinner. The seeds of celery are a different story altogether. They are the dried fruit of that wild smallage, and they are so small that it takes some 760,000 to make just one pound. But they make up in punch what they lack in size: they are intensely aromatic and strongly flavoured with an oil made up of the glycoside apiin, with lemony limonene, and other bitter compounds. Celery First Used as a Medicine Celery (Apium graveolens) is believed to be the same plant as selinon, mentioned in Homer's Odyssey about 850 B.C. Our word "celery" comes from the French celeri, which is derived from the ancient Greek word. The old Roman names, as well as those in many modern languages, are derived from the same root word and sound remarkably similar. This indicates a rather recent wide distribution and use of celery. Smallage, a plant now cultivated in gardens for flavouring purposes, is apparently "wild" celery, the plant that has been known as celery in the Mediterranean countries for thousands of years. Wild celery grows in wet places over Europe, the Mediterranean lands, Asia Minor, the Caucasus, and southeastward toward the Himalayas. It is believed to have originated in the Mediterranean area. Chinese writings of the 5th century after Christ mention it. Europeans "Tamed" the Wild Celery The oldest record of the word celeri is in a 9th-century poem written in France or Italy, giving the medicinal uses and merits of the plant. When its culture in gardens was begun in the 16th century in Italy and northern Europe, it was still a primitive plant, like smallage, and was used for medicinal purposes only. In France in 1623 use of celery as food was first recorded. For about a hundred years thereafter its food use was confined to flavourings. In France and Italy, by the middle of the 17th century, the little stalks and leaves were sometimes eaten with an oil dressing. In the late 17th and early 18th centuries, in Italy, France, and England, were seen the first evidences of improvement of the wild type. Gardeners also found that much of the too-strong flavour could be eliminated, making the stalks better for salad use, by growing the plants in late summer and fall, then keeping them into the winter. By the mid-18th century in Sweden, the wealthier families were enjoying the wintertime luxury of celery that had been stored in cellars. From that time on, its use as we know it today spread rapidly. We do not know what group of European colonists brought it to America, or when, but four cultivated varieties were listed here in 1806. All through the 19th century in America, England, and much of Europe, it was believed necessary to blanch the green edible portion of celery to rid it of unpleasantly strong flavour and green colour. This was done by banking the plants with soil. Some kinds, like Pascal and Utah, that remain green when ready for eating, are now considered to be of the finest quality. Many so-called "easy-blanching" or "self-blanching" varieties have appeared in the past 50 years. Generally, these self-blanching sorts are inferior in quality to the best green varieties, but can be grown successfully under less favourable conditions of soil and climate. Celeriac, or turnip-rooted celery, is a kind that forms a greatly enlarged, solid, more or less globular body just below the soil surface. It is not used raw, but is especially suited for use in soups and stews. Celeriac was developed from the same wild species as were our present improved varieties of celery, and at about the same time. About 1600, Italian and Swiss botanists gave the first descriptions of it. A hundred years later it was becoming common in Europe, but was hardly known in England. It has never become highly popular in England or the United States, but is a common vegetable all over Europe. No one knows if it's true, as the Dutch gynecologist Van de Velde says in his book, Ideal Marriage, that celery is an effective aphrodisiac. Nor does anyone know if celery offers protection from hangovers, as the Roman contended. It may be possible, or so thought many medieval magicians, that a few celery seeds placed in the shoes can help a person fly. True or not, rumours of celery power have been convincing enough to win the vegetable a prominent place on the crowns and crests of royalty. The Greeks used celery as a seasoning, the ancient Romans made a dessert from it and sixteenth century Europeans employed it, seeds, leaves and all, as a food, flavouring and medicine. In this country, our ancestors ate so much of this vegetable that a French observer noted that Americans nibble celery from the beginning to the end of their repasts. In Denmark this vegetable is used as the base of a rich blue-cheese soup. The famous Waldorf salad is essentially celery and apples in equal parts. Just about any salad profits from the vibrant crunch of celery, and soup stocks develop instant personality with the inclusion of its frilly leaves. Despite a bland exterior, celery is rich with potential. Because of its year-round availability, it is always easy to serve as a side-dish vegetable, salad, or aromatic, and its presence is always more than subtle. It may not be the kind of food that you dream of or rhapsodize about; rather it's the stuff of long-term relationships -- more like a pal than a paramour. Consumer and Cooking Guide Market Selection The most common variety is Pascal. Stalks should be rigidly crisp and leaves fresh-looking. Availability Year-round. Storage: Wrap in paper towels and store in plastic bag in refrigerator up to 1 week. Flavour Enhancer's Oregano, thyme, bay leaf, parsley, caper. Equivalents: 1 stalk = 1 cup, sliced or chopped Nutritional Value: Good source of Vitamins A, B, C, and E. 8 calories per cup.


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