Asparagus. The vegetable that we look at knowingly... knowing what it will do to our pee. According to the book Why Do Men Have Nipples, Asparagus contains a sulfur compound called mercaptan. As I mention in my video, the smell occurs when this substance is broken down in the digestive system. Now, not all people have the gene for the enzyme that breaks down mercaptan, just like not all people have the gene that enables some of us to curl our tongues (I know- not related). Some people can eat all the asparagus in the world without the odour. I am sure you are aware of my ongoing astonishment at the research studies that get grants, but one such "what's the point" research study that was published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology found that only 46 percent of the British people tested produced the odour while 100 percent of French people tested did.
There are many other interesting facts about asparagus aside from it's ability to make pee smell funny.
For example- did you know that asparagus is part of the lily family? A family of veggies that also includes onions, leeks, and garlic. Also- if you are all into gardening and know the difference between annuals and perennials, you may already know that Asparagus are perennials, meaning it has the ability to produce spears year after year from the same plant.
Asparagus also makes us want to have sex. Traditionally, a concoction of asparagus roots boiled in wine and taken while fasting apparently stirs up a little lust. Although its root is still used in medicines and has traditionally been used to treat a range of things from heart attacks to toothaches, it is the asparagus stalk that has been regarded as an aphrodisiac. Being blatantly phallic is one obvious point about the asparagus stalks. Another is the presence of a substantial amounts of aspartic acid, an amino acid that neutralizes the excess amounts of ammonia. Ammonia, which also makes an appearance with high meat protein diets, lingers in our bodies and make us tired and sexually disinterested. Aspartic acid takes care of that little modd killer.
I like to eat my asparagus lightly steamed- just until it is a bright green colour but still crunchy. And sometimes I like to dress it up in a cute outfit, such as my creamy ginger dressing.
- 1 Tbs Tamari
- 1 Tbs Maple Syrup
- 1 Tbs Ginger Root, chopped fine or grated
- 1 Clove of garlic, chopped fine or minced
- 1 Tbs Pumpkin Seed butter (or nut/seed butter of choice)
- 1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
- ¼ lemon, juiced
- 2-3 Tbs water (or as needed)
- Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Pour over veggie of choice or simply enjoy as a dip.
- Add water to sauce pan or pot.
- Add all ingredients to pot and stir gently, mixing ingredients together.
- Keep on low heat as sauce begins to simmer.
- Continue stirring until desired consistency is achieved.
- Spoon over veggies of choice.
- I enjoyed mine on a bed of mixed greens with some steamed beets. Pretty, isn't it?