Is Arugula Supposed To Be Spicy?

Is Arugula Supposed To Be Spicy?

Arugula (Eruca Sativa), also known as Rocket by many, is a peppery and spicy vegetable with a distinct flavor. The vegetable adds a spicy kick to your salad, sandwich, or freshly baked pizza. But is the arugula supposed to be spicy?

Yes, Arugula is supposed to be spicy. The vegetable is described as having a slightly peppery flavor. Its flavor and aroma are particularly noticeable in salad dressings and pizza. It happens to be endowed with glucoerucin-4- methylthiobutyl glucosinolate, a chemical compound associated with spiciness.

Arugula is a vegetable in the mustard family that is known for its peppery edible leaves. However, how is arugula’s spicy flavor stronger and more concentrated? This article will reveal these details and more about the spicy arugula. Scroll down for more information on the arugula.

Is Arugula Always Spicy? 

The majority of people have the wrong impression that arugula always has a spicy flavor; the immature leaves of the plant have a flavor that is significantly sweeter and more subdued. 

Arugula’s leaves become more peppery, spicy, and ever-so-slightly bitter as the plant matures and ages, and the flavor shifts sharply from mild to spicy as the plant develops further.

People who like the peppery flavor of arugula often harvest the leaves of the plant once they have reached full maturity. Harvesting it while it is still young and tender is recommended for those who do not like the spicy flavor it has.

Arugula eventually develops white flowers, and the bitter taste becomes more pronounced while remaining edible with its now very peppery flavor.

The Secret Behind the Spicy Arugula

A member of the mustard family, arugula has leaves that are edible and have a peppery and spicy flavor. It is the glucosinolates found in arugula that are responsible for its peppery and spicy flavor. This compound includes the detoxifying components that are accountable for the slightly bitter and spicy flavor of the leaves.

Additionally, glucosinolates can be found in a wide variety of other foods, such as horseradish and mustard, both of which are well-known for their fiery and pungent flavors.

How Can I Make Arugula Less Spicy?

Not everyone enjoys spicy food, most especially the peppery sensation that comes with it. While others enjoy the peppery and spicy flavor of arugula, others prefer it to be mild and regular.

To make arugula less spicy, sauté the leaves in olive oil with a pinch of garlic and stir-fry. You can also cook your arugula by putting it in a simmered, roasted or baked dish for a milder flavor.

What Are the Best Recipes for Spicy Arugula?

Spicy arugula gives your food a unique peppery taste and a green vegetable color. Its distinct flavor makes every dish delicious. Depending on what you want, you can lightly cook arugula and add it at the end of a cooking process, blanch it, or stir-fry it.

  • Arugula can be sprinkled as a pizza topping on freshly baked pizza.
  • Pancakes and waffles can benefit from the addition of arugula.
  • Arugula can be layered into sandwiches and burgers.
  • You can toss arugula leaves in salad dressings.
  • Arugula can be stirred into rice and pasta dishes.
  • They can be used in place of spinach in omelets.
  • This spicy vegetable pairs well with berries, cheeses, pears, and citrus fruits.
  • You can use arugulas to make rucolino, an after-dinner liqueur.
  • Arugula can be served with vegetables or olives as a herb sauce over fish.

Spicy Arugula’s Health Benefits

Arugula is a popular vegetable in Italian and Roman cuisines, and has recently become a staple in the United States. Despite its spicy and peppery flavor, what does arugula contribute to the body?

Arugula as an Immunity Booster

The leaves of arugula contain beta-carotene, which is beneficial to the health of the eyes and bones, as well as antioxidant properties, which boost the immune system of the body. 

Rich in Vitamins and Minerals

Arugula leaves are high in minerals like calcium and magnesium, which are important for bone formation; it is also high in folate and vitamins like Vitamin C (for healthy skin), K (for easy blood clotting), and A. (for eye vision and immunity).

Arugula has Low Fat

The leaves of arugula contain a low number of calories, carbohydrates, and fats. Because it has such a low calorie count, it is frequently recommended to people who are trying to reduce their overall body fat percentage.

Is Arugula Different from Spinach? 

People frequently confuse arugula with spinach due to similarities such as their green color and wide application in cuisines. However, the two vegetables have significant differences.

The leaves of arugula are long and ridged.The leaves of spinach are broad and oval.
Arugula has a peppery taste.Spinach has a mild, vegetable-like flavor.
When cooked, arugula becomes soggy.When cooked, spinach becomes thickened.

Frequently Asked Questions.

How Do I Know If My Arugula Is Bad?

Poor arugula can be identified by its appearance; its green leaves turn black and have a wet texture. Also, when it gets bad, the smell is irritating and awful; bad arugula has no peppery smell but a rotten and nasty odor with a sour taste against a spicy taste.

Does Unfresh Arugula Tastes The Same as Fresh Ones? 

Some vegetables, whether freshly cut or not, taste the same, but not arugula. The fresh arugula leaf has a thin texture and a crispy feel in the hand, allowing it to stand out in dishes. The unfresh arugula has lost its crisp texture. In cooking, it becomes soggy, affecting the spicy and peppery flavor.

How Long Does an Arugula Take to Grow?

Arugula is easy to grow and grows quickly for garden vegetable lovers who want to plant it. Because arugula grows quickly, there is no need to plant it at a specific time. Arugula leaves are ready to harvest and eat within a month of planting. 

Final Thoughts

Arugula’s spicy and peppery flavor makes it a popular restaurant and home cooking leaf. Those who find it too spicy for their taste can enjoy less spicy arugula cooked and sautéed in olive oil. We do hope we’ve adequately addressed the question, “Is arugula supposed to be spicy?”

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Bill Kalkumnerd
Bill Kalkumnerd

I am Bill, I am the Owner of HappySpicyHour, a website devoted to spicy food lovers like me. Ramen and Som-tum (Papaya Salad) are two of my favorite spicy dishes. Spicy food is more than a passion for me - it's my life! For more information about this site Click

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