Unique Chews – Sweet Potato Leaf 生生不息的地瓜葉

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Grow Taiwanese superfood in your garden/balcony! 在家自己種有陽台即可的超級食物!

Sweet potatoes are yummy and studies show that it’s got tons of good stuff in it, but have you ever had sweet potato leaves?

It is widely consumed here in Taiwan, I hear they are in Africa too, however I’ve never seen them sold in supermarkets in the US.

Farmers used to look down on this easy-to-grow vine and thought it wasn’t worth for us human to eat so they would only feed them to pigs, this situation has completely turned around after people discovered the amazing nutrient content in this deep-green vegetable.

Here are a few things that sweet potato leaves are rich in: carotene, protein(the secret recipe of keeping piggies healthy and strong), Vitamin A, Vitamin E, Iron, Calcium, packed with antioxidant and full of fiber(a softer kind that will help you unload at ease). Besides Vitamin A, sweet potato leaves has more nutrients than it’s sweet roots and minus all that starch!

Taiwanese consider sweet potato leaves as our super food and helps detox our body.

Doctors often suggest them for diabetic patients, people watching their weight and cancer patients (we strongly believes in diet therapy!). They even say that if there is one veggie you have to eat, it’s the sweet potato leaves!!

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It’s super easy to start growing your own sweet potato leaves, here are two ways for you to start:

  1. Get sweet potato leaves with stems, you can trim off all the leaves to eat then just get a pot and fill it with dirt then stick your stems in it (or your garden) and start watering them once every two to three days and they should have new leaves growing out in no time. They really don’t need much care!
  2. If you live in a place where they don’t sell sweet potato leaves in the market, you can start growing some by using sweet potatoes as “seeds”. Place a few in a plate and spray them with water every day or simply soak them in water (about 1cm high) then when they start sprouting and growing you can then move them to your pot or garden.

When they’re all grown, all you have to do is to trim off the leaves and leave the stems and they’ll keep growing!

-Tiffany Alexandria

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相信生長在寶島的孩子們 對地瓜及地瓜葉一點也不陌生(在國外可是從來沒吃過/看過),吃地瓜葉的好處也被台灣各大雜誌及名人們一而再再而三的報導,什麼什麼營養素的抗癌等等。

聽說以前地瓜葉是拿來餵豬的,小時候爺爺也不愛吃著深綠色的葉子每次看到它就叫“豬兒菜”,什麼時候開始地瓜葉成了台灣的超級食物? 超級食物是什麼? 如果我們每天什麼都不吃,只吃這些學者研究出富含微量元素的食物們就可以活得比較久嗎? 應該要有人對這部分做特別的研究看看。

在此不管地瓜葉是不是真的能讓人長命百歲,我是對它的再生能力欽佩不已。

之前在陽台花園陸陸續續撒下了一些菜菜子他們也慢慢茁壯以後,自己覺得越來越有成就。與媽媽分享後,她強烈建議我試種地瓜葉– 長得容易,長得快,澆水就會活。

當她看到我對他的分享沒有積極的實驗後,某一次回家,她炒了一大盤地瓜葉當晚餐,然後拿出四大包(每袋最少2斤)禿禿的綠綠的枝條要我回家種。

那些梗梗在冰箱裡LONGSTAY了大約兩個禮拜直到有一天我心血來潮把他們拿出來種,可是沒有人告訴我應該橫的埋還是直的插! 因此我的地瓜梗有的立正站好又的橫躺在土裡,實驗嘛~二擇一總有一個會成功!

接下來的幾天想到就去澆澆水(大概是3天才會想到一次) 就這樣,大約5天後躺平的孩子們開始冒出了嫩嫩綠綠的葉子;立正站好的大概又過了5天之後才發芽。

大約半個月過後葉子就被我剪來吃了再過了半個月他們又長出了更茂密的葉子!!  某次煮了地瓜葉後因為懶得清水槽就把梗梗丟在水槽裡,兩天過後他們居然已經長出白白胖胖的根了~

 

種地瓜葉小撇步:

  • 去市場買地瓜葉,梗長一點的先回來“試吃(現在地瓜葉品種很多)。 找到喜歡的口感就把梗留下來,然後:
  1. 直接直插在土裡然後澆水,這樣可以在比較小的空間長比較多地瓜葉。缺點是開始長葉子的時間會慢一點。
  2. 橫躺在土裡再蓋一層薄薄的土,似有似無就可以了,然後澆水。
  3. 先把枝條插在水裡(大約吃水4公分就夠了)放在有自然光線(不要大太陽下)的地方等待他們生根,生根之後就可以插在泥土裡了~
  • 如果沒有人買地瓜葉呢? 土法煉鋼嘍~

地瓜葉是從地瓜長出來的,可是現在市場買的地瓜葉都是改良過的主要是為了葉子而生所也葉子比較大纖維比較軟;從地瓜生出來的葉子比較小,纖維也比較粗,不過沒魚蝦也好,種吧!! 拿一顆(或好幾顆)地瓜放在盤子裏面每天噴噴水或是直接讓它有大約一公分泡在水裡,等它發芽之後就可以移到土裡埋起來嘍!

要吃的時候剪剪葉子煮來吃,梗留著他們就會繼續長的更大更多更好。

-Tiffany Alexandria

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