By: John Verlinden*/TRT Cuisine Writer-
Green is Good!
Everyone’s going green these days. Concerns for our planet’s health have motivated us to recycle more and waste less, to conserve our precious resources and reduce our carbon footprints. Government, businesses and organizations are all involved; we have new environmental policies, new earth friendly products and new programs promoting education and involvement on behalf of Mom Nature.
And, now we’re about to enjoy our greenest holiday of the year – no, I don’t mean Earth Day, it’s St. Patty’s Day – the wearing of the green, green shamrocks, green leprechauns and GREEN BEER! I’m only a wee bit Irish, but I’m still a whale of a lot angry that we LGBTers aren’t welcome to participate in the parade. When that ruling came down in 1995 I was so upset; I stopped celebrating this really cool holiday.
Well, no more! This year, as my own personal act of Irish pride, green activism and gay defiance, I’m making a culinary statement. And, I encourage you readers to do the same thing. I’m going green in my kitchen by adding a big batch of greens to my boiled dinner. That’s right greens – those dark, green leafy things in bundles at the supermarket. For some reason, outside of the American south, people are scared of greens. Well, trust me those beautiful collard, kale and Swiss chard leaves aren’t just for decorating party trays, they’re delicious and so good for us. Our prehistoric ancestors ate pounds of them every day, and no wonder because greens are one of nature’s most powerfully nutritious foods. Greens are rich in minerals (iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium), vitamins (K, C, E and many of the Bs), phytonutrients (beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin) and fiber and they contain almost no carbs. Best of all, they cost very little green – a great value, you can get a big bunch for just a couple of dollars. So, join me and go greens this St. Patty’s Day!
Oh, and one more thing – just so you’ll know, St. Patrick’s Day falls on Thursday this year … and only queers wear green on Thursdays. ; )
Until next time – ¡Mucho Gusto!, ¡Muchas Gracias! y ¡Buen Provecho!