Sunday, 22 January 2012

Garlic is good for you - and a poison detector, too

(From JimenaPulse, March, 2007) Aside from its ability to bring good luck, protect against evil and ward off vampires, there are other benefits to this marvel of Spanish cuisine, sometimes known as ‘the stinking rose’ thanks to its therapeutic value. There is hardly a dish available in Spain that doesn’t contain it in one form or another. Just in case we’ve forgotten, here is a short list of some of its benefits: Provides Vitamins B6 and C; lowers blood pressure and LDL cholesterol (the bad one); increases HDL cholesterol (good); helps prevent atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease; reduces risk of heart disease and strokes; inhibits coronary calcification. But, there's another useful thing it does, specially in these parts: it is a toxin detector: if you have any doubt about any wild mushrooms you might have collected, boil them for 15 minutes in water with two large cloves. After that, remove them with a wooden spoon and cut each in half; if the insides are white, there is no poison in the mushrooms, if not, chuck the whole thing out (from, so don't blame us if anything goes wrong!). Any wonder why the famous Mediterranean Diet works? Or is that just another good reason to live here? Prospero is off to the kitchen…

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