'Canola Blossoms: The Next Great Micro-Green' by Chef Shane Zimmerman
Being a native of Nebraska, I am very familiar with seeing brilliant green cornfields that go on seemingly forever. But my recent trip to Canada, on yet another Bunge MOE Food Truck expedition, the color has a distinctly different hue. Driving across Southern Manitoba and Saskatchewan, there were fields and fields of almost unnaturally bright yellow rapeseed blossom. For those of you who don’t know rapeseed, you might recognize it by its more common name, Canola, a rebranded term for Canadian Oil. Canola can only grow along a certain latitudinal band across the world, and southern Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta are prime growing areas for Canola. During our trip, we had the chance to go out into one of the fields and sample the brilliant yellow, immature blossom and pod of the Canola plant. In early summer, the Canola pods are actually edible and, much to our surprise, very tasty. They had a raw cabbage-like flavor that was slightly sweet. They would be a perfect addition to a composed greens salad of varying microgreens with a vinaigrette made with canola oil. People in the region have been eating these blossoms for years, but the blossoms aren’t readily available in the US because most of the crop goes to oil production and is little known to anyone besides those native to the area. So you’ve heard it here first, Canola blossoms could be the next big trend in salad greens!