INDIAN CRESS / NASTURTIUM


                                                                                                  Tropaeolum majus
The flowers carry many beneficial nutrients, including manganese, iron, Vitamin C, flavonoids & beta carotene.

Nasturtium contains compounds called mustard oil glycosides that liquefy thickened mucus, enabling it to be cleared from the sinuses more easily.

Nasturtium is indicated to help relieve symptoms of hay fever, sinusitis, colds & flu, including nasal congestion, sneezing, watery & itching eyes & headaches.

Indian Cress is a herbal antibiotic, fighting infections of the kidneys, bladder, urine conduct, lungs, respirational system & flu type infections.

It can help clear mucous from the throat & lungs.

The seed pods may be antifungal.

Fresh leaves are used for treating all kinds of injuries, particularly inflamed wounds.

Fresh leaves are used in a blood-cleansing spring salad or as cooling wound compress.

Chewing the leaves is a good way to disinfect one's mouth.

Leaves are for boosting appetite & stimulating digestion.

It is also used for strengthening the female organs, as a mouthwash for all kinds of dental & gum diseases, for joints, rheumatic arthritis- also from the high levels of vitamin C, topically for minor muscle aches ,for gastric & intestinal ulcers & for neuralgic diseases.

The juice extracted from the herb or a tea prepared from it may be employed in the form of an internal or external antiseptic.

The herb is also believed to have a favourable consequence on the blood by means of encouraging formation of new blood cells.

PRECAUTIONS:

Excessive consumption of the fresh leaves can cause irritation of the gastrointestinal tract & the kidneys.

There is no risk of such side-effects when precisely dosed medicinal preparations are used.

Attention should be drawn to the reduced alcohol tolerance.

Nasturtium should not be used on small children & infants.

If you suffer from gastric or intestinal ulcers or kidney problems, you should not take it orally.

Do not take this plant internally if you are, or may possibly, be pregnant; it can bring on premature labor or bleeding.


RECIPES:

Salads, sandwiches, garnish, vinegars,egg dishes.
Use chopped leaves with cottage cheese & other spreads.
Buds & seeds are used as a substitute for capers.
Ripe seeds are roasted & ground as a seasoning. 
The leaves are very tasty in potato salad or egg salad & on cream cheese sandwiches.

The flowers are less peppery; they contain a lot of vitamin C & make an excellent flavoring for vinegar & are beautiful in a delicate tossed salad.

Tea:

2-3 bruised leaves in a cup of boiling water.
Infuse 15 minutes.
1 cup 3 times per day.

Stuffed Nasturtium Flowers:


Mix 250 g softened cream cheese with
2 tbsp finely minced chives or other herbs of your choice.
Stuff the mixture into nasturtium flowers.
Serve at room temperature.

Nasturtium Mayonnaise:

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 tsp finely minced garlic
2 tsp coarsely chopped capers (or pickled nasturtiums)
1/3 tsp grated lemon peel
2 tsp chopped nasturtium leaves
Combine all ingredients well.
Keep refrigerated until ready to use.
Use on seafood or on any sandwiches in place of regular mayonnaise.

Nasturtium & Potato Soup:

2 tbsp butter
1/2 large sweet onion, finely chopped
2 medium potatoes, peeled & chopped
25-30 nasturtium leaves, stems removed
4 cup chicken broth (or water)
1 1/4 cups milk
1 bay leaf
salt & pepper to taste
Melt the butter in a stock pot.
Add the onion & cook until soft but not browned, stirring occasionally.
Add the potatoes & nasturtium leaves & continue cooking until the leaves are wilted, about 5 minutes.
Add the chicken broth & milk to the stock pot.
Add the bay leaf, salt & pepper, then bring to a boil.
Cover & simmer gently until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf & discard.
Puree the soup in a blender until smooth.
Serve garnished with fresh nasturtium blossoms.

Nasturtium Vinegar:


1 cup nasturtium leaves, flowers & buds
500 ml apple cider vinegar
Place the ingredients in a clean clear glass jar or bottle.
Tightly seal.
Let sit for at least 3 weeks before using.
Place a new nasturtium in the finished bottle for decoration, but you should make sure the vinegar always covers the flowers or they will mold.
Use in salads, sauces & flavoring in other dishes.

Strawberry-Nasturtium Salad:


500 g strawberries, sliced
1/3 cup nasturtium blossoms
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 -3 tbsp sugar
Toss together all of the ingredients.

Nasturtium Lemon Butter:

1/2 cup butter softened
1-2 tsp grated lemon peel
1 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp finely chopped nasturtium blossoms
Mix all of the ingredients.
Refrigerate until ready to serve. .
This lovely butter has a mild lemon/pepper flavor & a colorful appearance. It is wonderful on fish, chicken & vegetables. This is also great on those small party breads.

Pickled Nasturtium Seeds:

Use green nasturtium seeds & in picking retain a short length of stem on each.
Lay the seeds in cold salted water for 2 days (2 tbsp salt to 1 l water), then place them in cold water for another day.
Drain well & place the seeds in a glass jar, cover with vinegar heated to the boiling point & close the jar tightly.
In a few days the seeds will be ready to use.
They are an excellent substitute for capers.

Nasturtium Herb Vinaigrette:

180 ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
60 ml Sherry Vinegar
1 shallot, roughly chopped
Salt & black pepper
1 tsp honey
2 tsp freshly chopped basil
2 tsp freshly chopped parsley
1 tsp freshly chopped tarragon
120 ml freshly chopped Nasturtium petals
Place all the ingredients in a food processor & process until well blended & smooth.
Chill until ready to serve.

Nasturtium Pesto Recipe from Hitchhiking To Heaven

Smoked Haddock & Nasturtium Fishcakes Recipe from Sarah Raven

Squash & Nasturtium Butter Pasta from When Harry Met Salad


BEAUTY:

Decoction of the flowers & leaves of nasturtium against hair loss:

1 handful of flowering nasturtium stems put in ½ liter of cold water, bring to the boil a& simmer gently for 15 minutes, drain, let cool & store refrigerated.
The scalp is then slightly moistened decoction & allowed to dry.

Decoction of leaves & flowers nasturtium to treat dandruff:

2 handfuls of foliage to give 1 liter of cold water, bring to the boil & simmer gently 15 minutes, drain & set aside to cool.
Then add 1 tbsp of cider vinegar & use the last rinse hair after washing.

Lotion made from the leaves, flowers & seeds, mixed with nettle leaves & three oak leaves, would prevent baldness.

Oil can be used in cases of acne & skin problems.

Nasturtium flowers can be used in the bath for their astringent properties & can be made into an infusion to be used as a rinse for strawberry blond or red hair.

To make a nasturtium infusion, use 25 g dried flowers or 250 ml fresh flowers to 1 litre of water.

The infusion can also be added to skin toners, creams & lotions as nasturtium helps to keep the skin clear.

Foot Soak:

For fungal infections, such as athlete's foot, add 2 cups of leaves to 4 cups of boiling water.
Steep 15-20 minutes.
Strain.
Add to 7 l of warm water.
Soak the feet in the solution for 20-30 minutes each day for 2 weeks.

MAGIC:

Protective plant,keeps unwanted visitors away.








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