You’re making me blanch…Etioliation

Etiolation: You know when you leave a bucket on the grass and all the grass under it goes sort of pale green and white?  That is etioliation.  It’s a plant response to trying to grow in low light. If the pale stems ever find sun, they’ll to turn green.  (That is de-etiloation)

We eat a lot of etiolated plants. In fact people’ve come up with some elaborate processes for producing white asparagus, endive, cauliflower and celery.  We grow them in dark boxes, cover them with hay or in the case of cauliflower, tie the leaves around the flower head to make it white.

That is called blanching.  The definition is the same; a lack of color development in plants due to exclusion of light.

So etioliation is the physical process of whats happening.  Blanching is weird control thing we do to make plants conform to our desire to eat things that are slightly different from other foods.

We are weird control freaks aren’t we?

Etioliated Sweet Potato


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