Hindi Name: Tara Mira
Rocket leaves or popularly known as arugula or salad rocket is nutritious green-leafy vegetable. The young tender leaves carry a bitter peppery flavor that makes it mostly a salad vegetable.
Rocket leaves have a sweet, nutty flavor when they're young but start developing a strong spicy flavor as they mature. Rocket leaves are available throughout the year.
It is a quick growing cool season crop. Usually Arugula leaves are ready to harvest within 40 days of sowing the seed. It gains a height of approximately 2-3 ft and bears a creamy white colored flower which is edible. Requires a well watered fertile soil and adequate sunlight.
The leaves can be eaten either raw or cooked. The pungent odour of the leaves can be cut down by adding lettuce leaves.
In few popular cultures, arugula leaves are eaten raw in salads. A combination of mozzarella cheese with arugula is very popular in Brazil. Rocket leaves are also an essential condiment in pasta in the United States and Mediterranean region.
In West Asia and northern parts of India, the seeds are pressed to extract oil, which is used in pickling and food preservatives.
It combines very well with goat cheese (feta) and is always a good addition in salads, burgers, sandwiches, pastas, pizzas and stews. It can be used as a substitute for Basil. Matches well with: Avocado, olive oil, parmesan cheese, pears, pecans, pine nuts walnuts and garlic.
1. Arugula leaves are believed to be a safe and natural treatment for stomach ulcers.
2. Salad rocket is very low in calories and contains high amount of vitamins A and C.
3. The leaves are considered to detoxify enzymes from the body.
4. It is a rich source of minerals, such as copper and iron. It is high in vitamins and anti-oxidants whereas its calorie count is very low.
Tip: While buying, look for young crispy green leaves. Avoid flowered harvest, as its leaves are tough and bitter in taste.
Note:Rocket leaves are prone to absorb a lot of sand, and hence must be thoroughly washed and properly soaked before consuming.