Stem and stalk vegetables
Stem and stalk vegetables are the shoots from the roots of a plant, namely the parts that grow above the ground.
Although asparagus is also grown in France, Spain, Israel, Africa and Chile, Belgian asparagus has a great reputation. This vegetable has a reputation for being chic and expensive, however it doesn't cost so much in the right season. There are white and green varieties of asparagus. The white kind grows under the ground and never sees the light, while the green variety grows above the ground. Asparagus can be eaten warm and cold, and the tender, juicy spears are delicious!
Did you know that there are more than 500 kinds of onions? An onion can be brown, yellow, white, red or purple. They can be very big or very small; round, elongated or flat in shape. Usually, they are eaten as an accompaniment to something else, but even onion soup can be delicious. To stop your eyes from watering when peeling onions, simply peel them under water.
Leeks are used in many dishes for their lightly piquant flavour: for example in leek soup, or in combination with fish and shellfish. Since the late 70s, they have become a top vegetable in the better restaurants. Belgian leeks are widely known for their long, thick stalks.
There is an old saying that every in mouthful of fennel you can taste a warm breeze from the Mediterranean ... and indeed, fennel does have a very particular taste: fresh and slightly aniseedy. In addition, this vegetable is also very healthy, thanks to its high levels of vitamins A and C.
Green and white celery
Celery is an enormously versatile vegetable: green celery gives an extra kick to your vegetable soup, while white celery can be cooked or eaten raw. Celery salt (the salt made from celery) is a kitchen herb that is often used as a substitute for ordinary salt. These stalks are good for your teeth and bones, thanks to their high calcium content. Long ago, celery was also used as a medicine to purify the blood.
The difference between green and white celery is not just a matter of the colour, it also applies to the thickness and the taste. White celery is a bit thicker and tastes a bit milder than the green kind.