Food

Health Benefits of Catalonia

We are increasingly looking for a healthy diet that brings benefits to our body. A green little known but very nutritious is Catalonha or Catalonia .

But what is Catalonia? Of the same species as the almeirão and even very similar, the Catalonia plant has an average height of 45 to 50 cm, dark green leaves and a bitter taste, long, smooth, thin with toothed edges and thick white stalks that go to the tip of the leaf.

The leaves and stalks of vegetable Catalonia can be used as they contain many vitamins and minerals. It is rich in calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, fiber, vitamins A, C and B complex and a 100 gram serving has only 24 calories.

Despite its bitter taste, which may not please all palates, after cooking and seasoning, it becomes very pleasant on the palate and can be used in numerous recipes such as pies, bruschetta, salads, braised and accompanying various deliveries such as rice, beans and meat, for example.

Among the properties of Catalonia are its anti-inflammatory and blood pressure control action. Rich in calcium, its consumption contributes to the formation of bones and teeth and vitamin C helps to increase immunity. Like other dark green leafy vegetables, it has iron that prevents anemia and improves oxygen transport to all body tissues.

CATALONIA HOW TO DO IT AND WHAT IT IS FOR

Catalonia or Catalonia is a very nutritious vegetable, but little known by Brazilians. Every 100 grams contain 2 grams of protein, 3.7g of fiber, 63 mg of calcium, 16 mg of magnesium and 452 mg of potassium, in addition to vitamin A, C and the B complex.

Catalonia is most easily found from March to November and, in a refrigerator, can be kept for 3 to 4 days. You can consume it raw with other greens and vegetables, thus preserving all the vitamin C present in catalonia, however, as it has a bitter taste, you can choose to sauté it as you do with the garlic and cabbage. Sautéed, the bitter taste is softened and you gain in flavor, as it can be added several spices and used as a filling in pies and souffles.

For those who don’t know how to remove the bitter taste of Catalonia, the process is quite simple. It should be cooked well for about 8 to 10 minutes in a pot with plenty of water. A tip is to cook in salt water or with a coffee spoon of baking soda, this keeps the leaves bright green.

As the bitterness will come out in the water during cooking, drain well before adding the seasoning. After draining, the Catalonia can be seasoned with the spices of your choice, some ideas are olive oil, salt and lemon, but there are several dishes that can be used and simple recipes from Catalonia.

CATALONIA PROPERTIES

Rich in minerals and vitamins that improve the overall health of the body, it is worth adding it to the menu to enjoy all the benefits of Catalonia. For those who don’t like its bitter taste, just cook it in plenty of water before seasoning and consuming.

1.Beneficial for the circulatory system

Catalonia is rich in potassium, an important mineral for controlling the heartbeat and responsible for regulating blood pressure, thus contributing to the proper functioning of the circulatory system.

2. Improves bowel function

This vegetable is rich in fiber, which are excellent to fight intestinal problems, improve intestinal transit, prevent constipation and even prevent some types of cancer such as colorectal. In addition, fiber helps eliminate toxins and control fat absorption.

3. Helps improve cholesterol

The fibers present in Catalonia, in addition to improving the functioning of the intestine, help reduce cholesterol and control excess sugar in the blood.

4.Beneficial for muscles

Those who exercise can benefit even more from the consumption of catalonia, as it has important minerals for muscle function, such as calcium, magnesium and potassium. These substances play a role in muscle contraction and cramp prevention.

5. Helps prevent osteoporosis

Calcium is the mineral responsible for the formation of bones and teeth. The consumption of catalonia, due to the presence of this mineral, helps to prevent osteoporosis.

6.Improves skin health

Rich in vitamin A, its consumption helps to improve the health of the skin, giving it a more beautiful appearance and fighting aging. Vitamin A is needed for cell renewal and collagen synthesis, which supports the skin.

7. Increases immunity

Vitamin C, present in Catalonia, gives resistance to blood vessels and improves the immune system, making it stronger to fight infections.

SIMPLE CATALONIA RECIPES

Despite being little publicized, Catalonia is a very nutritious food that is worth including on the menu. Its bitter taste can be softened by slow cooking in plenty of water. Among the consumption options, it can be used as a filling for pies, as an accompaniment to other foods such as rice and beans or even in salads.

RICE WITH CATALONIA

Ingredients

1 bunch of Catalonia
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 clove of garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cups of cooked rice
1 tomato without seeds, chopped

How to prepare

Wash the Catalonia leaves and cut them into thin strips. Cook with plenty of water and a pinch of salt for 10 minutes. Drain to remove water well.

Heat the oil and fry the garlic. Add the onion and the cooked Catalonia and saute for a few minutes. Add rice, tomatoes and a little water and heat over low heat with the pan covered.

CATALONIA PIE

Ingredients

  • 2 packs of catalonia
  • 100g of cubed bacon
  • Water
  • salt to taste
  • Pepper sauce
  • 300g of ricotta or cream cheese
  • 500g of puff pastry

Preparation mode

  1. Wash the vegetable leaves well. In a saucepan, place the Catalonia and add enough water to cover the greens and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil.
  2. Drain the water, you can even squeeze the leaves to remove excess water and chop them roughly.
  3. In a skillet, fry the bacon without any fat until golden. (It is not necessary to add any oil for this as the bacon fat is enough).
  4. Add the chopped Catalonia, salt to taste, a few drops of pepper sauce and saute for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it cool, then stir in the ricotta or cream cheese.
  5. Roll out the dough to a thickness of 3cm and line the bottom and sides of the pan. Add the filling and decorate with dough strips. Place in the oven, already preheated to 200°C for approximately 50 minutes or until golden.

braised catalonia

Ingredients

1 pack of catalonia

3 large crushed garlic cloves

2 tablespoons of oil

Black olives (optional)

salt to taste

preparation mode

Wash the Catalonia leaves one by one, soak in vinegar for about 15 minutes. Drain well and cut into small pieces.

In a pan, brown the garlic cloves crushed in oil and add the chopped Catalonia. Saute over high heat, stirring slightly so as not to create water. Add salt to taste and olives.

Serves with rice, beans and poultry, pork, beef or as you prefer.

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Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

Robert Asprin

Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

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