How to make the most of watercress – recipe | Waste not

how to make the most of watercress recipe waste not

Watercress is a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals, and the whole plant – the thin and thick stalks, as well as the leaves – is edible. To serve raw, pull into manageably sized pieces that are easy to eat with a fork. If any of the thicker stems are notably tough and fibrous, save them to make today’s “pesto”, or refine them to use alongside the rest of the bunch by piling them up and finely chopping across the grain.

Watercress is easily bruised and doesn’t keep for long, so it’s best to buy it in smaller quantities that you know you will be able to use up. To prolong its life, store in the fridge with the base of the stems in a bowl of water. If it does begin to wilt, give it a quick wash and cook it – watercress can be swapped out for or included alongside just about any green; I especially like it stir-fried whole with garlic and served with a splash of soy sauce.

Watercress pesto is divine, whether you toss it through pasta much as you would a basil-based one, enjoy alongside roast vegetables or use as the base for a salad dressing. Watercress, hemp, orange and blue cheese all go particularly well with beetroot, so dress cooked beets and watercress sprigs with this pesto to make a mind-blowing salad…

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