We Grow Each to Maximize Its Healing Power
Turmeric is perhaps the undisputed “star” of the medicinal plant world, affecting everything from inflammation, neurological health, the development of cancers, immune-system health and other vital health processes. Turmeric, in its various forms, is the subject of thousands of peer-reviewed articles on Pub Med, and countless turmeric preparations are available to consumers through many websites.
My version of turmeric is admittedly a humble one. I believe that the best use of turmeric is the traditional use. That is, turmeric should be grown in one of the turmeric centers of the world, the islands of Hawaii and India. Our turmeric is grown on an organic homestead and an organic wildlife center on the island of Maui. Then, it should be shade dried, chopped or ground into powder and, when used in cooking, dissolved in butter or ghee. The finished dish should have a bit of fresh ground black pepper added for flavor and absorption of the curcumin component. This is how I use turmeric, and until I am proven otherwise, will continue to think it is the most effective way to use this amazing plant.
Ashitaba is not so easy to use. Almost no one in the U.S. grows ashitaba, either in home gardens or for sale in farmers markets. The taste of fresh ashitaba, probably due to the pungent chalcone-rich sap, is not exactly a culinary delight for everyone. Ashitaba tea, made primarily from the leaves, is likely to be low in these important chalcones, which are concentrated in the sap.
The best way I know to use this nutrient-dense, intensely medicinal plant is to grow it biodynamically or organically, dry the stalks as well as the leaves, harvest the plant in the day when the sap is “running,” carefully shade dry the leaves and stalks and grind it into powder to be used as an additive to soups, smoothies and other dishes. This is what we are offering in our unique Ashitaba Powder, a true farmer-to-table, highest-quality product.
Wishing you health and peace,
Happy Spring, everyone! As I type this on an early Sunday morning, we are having a beautiful early spring here in the Northeast. Our new garden fence is up, the garden beds are slowly being made, the greenhouse is nearly finished, and seedlings are in the greenhouse planter boxes. For me, spring represents many things, but on a completely practical level it means the transition from “exercise” to doing actual work with my body. Shoveling, pushing a wheel barrow through mud, pitch forking hay — these are my favorite ways to work up a sweat and start the day.