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The Organic Egg Difference

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017 | Shane Heaton

We Aussies love our eggs. Australian farmers produce around 5 billion eggs a year, but… shockingly… about half of these are from caged hens. Caged egg production Shoppers are starting to move away from caged eggs, which has brought about new classifications in the big supermarkets such as “Cage-Free” and “Free-Range”. However there is varying […]

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Quinoa

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

Incan superfood Chenopodium quinoa History Quinoa (pronounced “keen-wah”) was a principal grain of the Incas, given sacred status as a “mother grain” and thus targeted by Spanish colonisation tactics. For 400years it survived only in remote, inaccessible areas of the Andean altiplano (high plains), but is now enjoying resurgence in popularity. Botanically, quinoa is not […]

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Green Tea

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

Meditation in a cup Camellia sinesis History Green tea is made from the dried leaves of an evergreen shrub native to Asia. Chinese legend has it that the Emperor Sh’eng Nung took the first sip of tea in about 2737 BC when some leaves accidentally blew into his cooking pot, and since then tea has […]

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Tomatoes

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

What did the Italians eat before Columbus? Lycopersicon esculentum History The tomato is a member of the nightshade family originating from western South America. The early Aztecs of Mexico considered the tomato a ìhealthî food and reverently offered it to their gods of healing. Europeans shunned it, initially, suspicious of its shiny bright colours. Today […]

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Pumpkin

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

My Oh My, Sweet Pumpkin Pie Curcubita maxima/mixta/pepo History The pumpkin, along with other squashes, is native to the Americas. It comes in a variety of colours ranging from white and peach to even blue and aqua. The Native Americans cultivated, dried and made pumpkin into a type of flour. The Chinese named the pumpkin […]

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Potatoes

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

The Humble Spud Solanum tuberosum History Native to the Andes, the potato was introduced to Europe in 1534 after the conquistador, Francisco Pizarro stumbled upon it near Quito, Ecuador. He described the potato as “a tasty, mealy truffle”. The potato became popular, albeit reluctantly, by peasants who thought the tubers looked like leprous hands and […]

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Oranges

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

Which came first, the fruit or the colour? Citrus sinensis, C.aurantium, C. reticulata History Oranges are a favourite fruit in mythology, having been identified as the Golden Apples that grew in the mythological garden of the Hesperides (probably the Canary Islands). Legend has it that the golden apple presented by Gaea, the ancient Greek goddess […]

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Onions

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

Know your Onions Allium cepa History Considered to be of Central Asian origin and spread around the world via migrating Indo-European tribes, the onion is a member of the lily family. It has been eaten by the Egyptians, who esteemed the onion as a source of strength (and consequently fed to all slaves building the […]

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Mushrooms

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

If you go down to the woods today… Agaricus bisporus History The word mushroom is derived from the French word ‘mousseron’, meaning they grow on moist moss. For centuries these primitive plants have been linked with magic and myth, created by bolts of lightning. In Egypt, none but the pharaohs were permitted to partake of […]

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Garlic

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

No Vampires Round Here… Allium sativum, Allium scorodoprasum History The entire ancient world from Spain to China revered garlic. It’s the world’s second oldest medicine. The ancient Egyptians used garlic to increase stamina and strength as well as protection from disease, and gave it freely to labourers and slaves (to keep them building the pyramids!). […]

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Chilli Peppers

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

Available in mild, medium, hot, very hot, ‘excruciating’, and ‘you’ll wish you’d never been born’ Capsicum annuum, Capsicum frutescens History Native to the Americas, peppers and chillis are not related in any manner to black pepper. They were originally cultivated by the Incas of Peru and so highly valued in that the pods were used […]

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Carrots

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | crankit

Motivation Rule #1: Carrots work better than sticks Daucus carota sativa History Most probably native to the region of Afghanistan, where there still exists the greatest diversity, the carrot has not always been orange nor so very sweet. Purple was the colour of the first carrot, coloured by anthocyanidins. During the 9th and 10th centuries, […]

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