August 5, 2008
Salad greens have come a long way since the days of chopped iceberg lettuce, sickly pink tomatoes and bland cucumbers. These days there are many greens to choose from, including baby spinach, arugula, escarole, raddichio, dandelion greens and countless red and green leaf lettuces.
There is one green, recommended by Anthony Worrall Thompson, that you should actually steer very far away from. In a recent magazine article, he suggested that home cooks should add a bit of henbane to their salad bowls for flavor and color. That's all fine and well, except for the fact that henbane is extremely poisonous and "can cause hallucinations, convulsions, vomiting and in extreme cases death." Sounds tasty.
In a recent statement Chef Thompson stated that he actually meant to a weed called 'fat hen' which is actually quite tasty and very healthy. Luckily, no fatalities have been reported in connection with his slip of the tongue.