(Co­ral­lina of­fic­i­nalis)

Country Life Every Week - - Kitchen Garden Cook Radicchio -

Al­though a de­light to even the ca­sual eye, Co­ral­lina of­fic­i­nalis re­quires close at­ten­tion for its more subtle beauty to be seen. The fronds are made up of hun­dreds of hard, pink, ar­tic­u­lated tubes, like some tiny ma­chine. Most or­gan­isms take some mea­sure to en­sure that they’re not eaten: we run away, but Co­ral­lina

of­fic­i­nalis builds its fronds out of cal­cium car­bon­ate and thus makes it­self too dif­fi­cult to eat. ‘Of­fic­i­nalis’, in­ci­den­tally, is found in the Latin names of species used by apothe­caries. In this case, the ground-up sea­weed was used to re­move in­testi­nal worms—pre­sum­ably em­ploy­ing the dras­tic method of scour­ing them out.

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