Microgreens– Fun-sized, Flavorful and Nutritiousadmin
Microgreens have been taking over the food industry. They have grown to become essential at many high-end restaurants. But why is this tiny plant trending? Its high nutritional value and ease of harvest allow it to be a top competitor. Microgreens are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
What are Microgreens?
Microgreens are tiny edible plants produced from vegetables and herbs. They are harvested immediately after the cotyledon stage— the heart-shaped stage of embryogenesis. Microgreens can be consumed 7 to 10 days after the leaves have developed. Not to be confused with sprouts–harvested in water. Microgreens are grown in soil and sunlight, and one can only consume the leaves and stems. These trending seedlings have taken the restaurant industry by a landslide due to their appeal, texture and flavors that elevate dishes.
Types of Microgreens
At Riviera Produce, we have a variety of microgreens to choose from and try. We source our seedlings from Fresh Origins. They also mix a variety of microgreens to create combinations of taste, textures, and colors. Although there is a variety of microgreens to select, they are all mainly grown from six different families of plants: the Brassicaceae, Asteraceae, Apiaceae, Amaryllidaceae, Amaranthaceae, and Cucurbitaceae.
- The Brassicaceae family is known for its cauliflower, radish, and cabbage.
- The Asteraceae family produces lettuce, chicory, and radicchio.
- The Apiaceae family is diverse since part of the family’s plants are poisonous. The nonpoisonous include herbs and spices such as cumin, anise, and coriander.
- The Amaryllidaceae family contains leeks, garlic, and onions.
- The Amaranthaceae family consists mainly of a variety of beet species and quinoa swiss chard.
- The Cucurbitaceae family plants include melons, squash, and cucumbers.
Best Tasting Microgreens
Although microgreens are tiny, they pack a punch of flavor. Each microgreen has a unique and wide taste profile from its mature plant. These tiny greens will shock you at how tasty they can be because it forces you to use four out of your five senses– it takes your palette through a culinary experience. The pop of color, the smell, texture, and taste all enhance the dish you are consuming. To help you put it into perspective– basil microgreens have a sweet and sour aftertaste– think of a lemon. Beet microgreens are earthy. Kale microgreens are sweet. According to Herbs at Home, the tastiest microgreens are:
- garden cress
Choosing the correct microgreen will level up and create a luxurious feel to your dish. Micro cilantro is a perfect example of how to include these tasty greens into your restaurant delicacy. Chefs incorporated its micro plant into their dishes to give it a sweet and bright aroma without the musky scent most people dislike.
Nutrient-dense. Microgreens consumed raw are the most beneficial to the body’s health since it’s concentrated in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Research indicates they contain up to forty percent more vitamins than their mature plant. Due to their large spectrum of antioxidants, they are anti-inflammatories and help protect against diseases. These powerhouse seedlings have an abundant amount of Vitamin C. The beetroot microgreen is beneficial for hair health since it is rich in iron, potassium, and electrolytes. They also provide essential skin nutrients such as vitamins A, B, D, E, Zinc, and sulforaphane antioxidants.
How to Store Microgreens?
One critical thing you should know about microgreens is storing them correctly. If not stored properly, they will dry out within a few hours. A few tips from MicroVeggy is if you must trim your seedling ensure you use a ceramic knife or scissor so it won’t bruise the plant. After harvesting, provide an ice-cold wash and sterilize them using a safe food-grade cleaning solution. When storing, ensure fridge temperature is above 40°F (~4°C). Use an open container with a wet paper towel underneath the microgreens to ensure proper air circulation and moisture. This method will allow your microgreens to stay nice and crispy for about a week. We do not recommend the usage of a zippable plastic bag.
How to Use Microgreens?
Fancy dishes are not the only place microgreens belong. Microgreens allow chefs creative freedom. Turning them into a side order or implementing them into pasta dishes are just a few of the endless possibilities. It’s not ideal to saute these tiny plants because the heat causes nutritional value loss. If it’s purchased in bulk, microgreens can be frozen. The seedlings will maintain their nutritional value but lose their textural component. It’s advised to freeze them only if planned to be used in smoothies. Replace mature plants for microgreens for a complex, full-bodied flavor in dishes.
Here are a few recipe ideas:
- Super-Power Microgreen Salad
- Avocado Toast with Microgreens
- Blueberry, Raspberry Smoothie with Microgreens
Most microgreens can regrow after their first harvest but not all due to the amount of stress caused to the baby plant. Microgreens are baby plants but baby plants are not microgreens– baby spinach. Although they are tiny plants, they are sure to top their mature equals and may grow full size if supplied with the proper environment.
Microgreens might be the small detail you need to elevate your dishes from a visual and nutritional perspective. We know you have enough on your plate. That’s why Riviera Produce is the ideal supplier for microgreens and fresh produce of farm to table. They ensure to source from the best farms in the New Jersey and New York area. Check out our website to find out more!