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Firehouse Gallery celebrating Earth Day

To celebrate Earth Day, April 22, the Firehouse Gallery in Waimea will present “Our Aina and Recycle Art” show. Hawaiian landscapes, plants and animals are showing Wednesday through April 25. April 26 to May 30 will be seascapes and marine life such as whales and coral reefs. The arts council is also adding flowers to it garden in the form of artwork.

Wonders of watercress

Before we finish National Nutrition Month, it’s worth noting that the Centers for Disease Control puts out a nutrition score card for green vegetables. In the No. 1 slot: watercress. Not exactly a household veggie, watercress is a member of the mustard family. Its small, dark green leaves are packed with beta carotene, calcium, potassium and vitamin C. Slightly peppery, bitter and tangy, watercress adds zip to soups, salads and sandwiches. You can juice it into smoothies, use some as a burger topping or as a garnish like parsley. And like parsley, watercress should be used in moderation; a little goes a long way.

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Asparagus salads

Asparagus quality and prices seem to be pretty good right now. I like the fat ones for roasting and the thin ones for stir-frys and pastas. Whether you steam, grill, roast, sauté or eat them raw, you should eat them often. These svelte stalks offer more than good looks. They are packed with carotenes, potassium, vitamin C and folic acid. Asparagus also serves as a diuretic to counter fluid retention, and is said to rival drug treatment for indigestion. For optimum nutrients, choose bright green stalks that are not withered at either end, and use them within a day or two. Unless using the skinny stalks, snap off the woody ends right before using. Although a bit pricier than other green vegetables, just a few asparagus spears, cooked properly, are usually enough per serving. Try them in salads for color, crunch and a great start to any meal.

Easy makeovers for national nutrition month

You’ve heard it before: Eat more fruits and vegetables. Less saturated fat. More fiber, less sugar. Eat in moderation. Chew slowly. Have smaller, more frequent meals. Even if you make only one small change, you’ll be better off.