Better than parsnips? Arracacha (Arracia xanthorrhiza)
- Hi Everyone,
My guess is that parsnips can be "nudged" into growth in Chile under greenhouses, using hydroponics or aeroponics systems with sufficiently deep pots and appropriate growing media (e.g. coconut coir).Following the bent of nature, however (which this site is all about), there is a similar root plant that florishes in many parts of Latin America (especially in moderately moist climates between 1,000 and 3,100 meters in Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Southern Brazil, and Argentina.) It looks like a white to light-orange carrot below the ground, has green to purple leaves above-ground, and a complex chestnut-like flavor many find richer and more engaging than that of that parsnip.
The name of the plant is the Arracacha (Arracacia xanthorrhiza). It is easily cooked and provides significant amounts of calcium and iron, among other nutrients. The yellow-orange variety contains a range of carotenes.
Throughout the Spanish-speaking world, breeders have adapted the Arraacha to fit differences of altitude and climate. Many varieties are available from growers in Costa Rica, Cuba, Haiti, and Puerto Rico. Any of you in Chile ever try the Arracacha?
Surrounded by Mardi Gras beads and other droppings from carnival floats--in S.E> Louisiana.
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