Spinach is a leafy green vegetable which is rich in riboflavin and has very high Vitamin C content. A cup of cooked spinach could contain quite a very high level of thiamine, Vitamins B6, A & E, potassium, magnesium and folate. Just like all green leafy vegetables, spinach water content is high that’s why it considerably shrinks when cooked. The juice extracted from spinach is known to be very effective in preventing formation of cancer cells. According to research, people who eat spinach on a regular basis are less prone to lung cancer.
Spinach can be prepared in many ways. It can be in salads, pizza topping, can be made into a dip, juice, sautéed with mushrooms and a lot more, the choices are endless. Although not a lot of people appreciate spinach, it can still be prepared in many ways to make it tolerable for picky eaters. It can be added in burgers, meatloaf or meatballs. It can be eaten raw or cooked.
2 Main Groups of Spinach
- Prickly-seeded variety – The leaves are lobed and considered as hardier.
- Smooth-seeded variety – Cope a lot better in high temperatures and are usually used for cropping during summer.
4 Main Types of Spinach
- Savoy spinach – The leaves are curly, crinkly and dark green.
- Smooth-leaf or flatleaf spinach – The leaves are unwrinkled and shaped like spades. This type makes cleaning and washing more convenient compared to the curly type. Flatleaf spinach has very tasty stalks which are very narrow.
- Semi-savoy spinach – Has mixed qualities of the flatleaf and savoy spinach.
- Baby spinach – Has leaves similar to the flatleaf variety which are commonly just about 3 inches. These tender and sweet leaves are usually more expensive. Usually, they’re sold loose and not in bunches. It’s famous for salad use but can also be cooked lightly.
Spinach Production and Storage
Spinach is sold frozen, canned, in pre-packaged bags, bunched or loose. With fresh spinach, a lot of its nutritional value gets lost when stored for a few days. The effect is slowed down with refrigeration to about 8 days.
Reheating leftover spinach isn’t advisable. Poisonous compounds could be formed caused by bacteria which thrive on prepared foods which are rich in nitrate, just like spinach and other green leafy vegetable.
- America – The leaves are thick and deep green.
- Bloomsdale Long Standing or Bloomsdale – Is a savoy type of spinach with tasty and fleshy leaves.
- Dominant – Is a great all-around variety.
- Giant Winter – A variety which that thrive on late autumn and winter. It could survive even with some frost.
- Horenso – Spinach variety from Japan. Its leaves are shaped like arrows and tapers to a point. Has a mild and sweet flavour.
- Medania – Summer spinach variety which could withstand hot and dry weather.
- Sigmaleaf – Is suitable for sowing during spring or autumn season.
- Space – Great for any season. The leaves are smooth and dark-green.
- Trinidad – Thrives during summer season and autumn. Its leaves are dark-green.