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Tasmanian Fresh Black Salsify

salisyBlack Salsify, also known as schorzonera, originates from Catalan ‘escorzo’ meaning viper, as the plant was used in ancient times to treat snakebites. Black Salsify is black on the outside with a soft, pristine white flesh in the centre; it is a long and tapered root vegetable. Salsify is hard to peel but worth it when you get to the flesh, since the root sap is an extremely sticky latex, it is often more convenient to peel it after boiling the root for 20 to 25 minutes.   The flesh has a slightly sweet, earthy taste and a wonderful, almost creamy texture reminiscent of young asparagus.

The thick black skin of the salsify root is usually considered inedible and can be removed either prior to or after boiling. If the skin is removed prior to boiling, the peeled root should be immediately immersed in water mixed with vinegar or lemon juice, in order to prevent discolouring. Black salsify is popular served like asparagus in a white sauce, such as bechamel sauce or mustard sauce. Boiled salsify roots may also be coated with batter and deep fried

Salsify is a unique vegetable to find in your local restaurant, or at your local fruit and veg shop, this is unfortunate as salsify has a wonderful flavour and texture which can enhance any meal. Salsify is very popular in France and Italy where it is used as an accompaniment to meats, in soufflés and is a very popular snack in Belgium.

n. Since the root sap is an extremely sticky latex, it is often more convenient to peel it after boiling the root for 20 to 25 minutes.