Bounty (Wild and Wonderful Weeds)
rains bring May flowers and, yes, all the weeds that have been
dormant all winter. Some of those weeds you are cursing and
pulling out of the garden are more nutritious than what you
are going to plant. Now I'm not advocating you grow a garden
of weeds. What I am saying is that you might want to get better
acquainted with them and save some from the weed pile to put
in your salad. I have been using chickweed as a ground cover
to keep other weeds out of a certain area in the garden. Now
I use the chickweed on my dinner table!
start with the ubiquitous dandelion. Nutrients: biotin, calcium,
choline, fats, gluten, iron, linolenic acid, magnesium, niacin,
phosphorus, B1, 2, 5, 6, 9, 12, E, P, zinc, A, and C. Does it
sound like the label on a vitamin bottle? Well, it really is
a wild and wonderful weed! In China it is called huang-hua-tii-ting
and is considered one of the six most important herbs in Chinese
medicine. It is a gross understatement to say it is worth eating
Here are some tips:
and Kidney Beans
lb dry kidney beans
Can also be made with canned beans.
5 qts water
2 cloves minced garlic
¼ cup olive oil
½ can stewed tomatoes
3 to 4 lbs dandelion greens
½ tsp black pepper salt to taste
3 qts water in a 6 to 10 qt pan and bring to a boil. Add beans.
Brown garlic in oil, then add oil and garlic to beans. Cook
until tender. Add tomatoes. In a separate pot, boil 2 qts water.
Wash and chop or tear dandelion leaves. Cook until tender, about
15 minutes. Drain, saving the dandelion liquid to add to tomato
juice or drink by itself. Add dandelions to the pot of beans.
Add seasonings. Serve with garlic bread. This dish with pasta
instead of dandelions is called Pasta Fagioli. You can add the
pasta and the dandelions .
Dandelions with Garlic and Chili
to 5 qts dandelion greens
1 cup water
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
garlic, salt, pepper, chili flakes
and chop the dandelions. Steam them in 1 cup water after you
have covered them with the olive oil and seasoning.
½ cups dandelion greens
½ lb mushrooms
½ cup grated Romano cheese
pie shell (optional)
oil and 2 garlic cloves, minced
bake the pie crust. Boil the greens until wilted but not completely
cooked. Drain, squeeze out liquid, and cut greens into small
pieces. Sauté greens and mushrooms in oil and garlic until water
is gone. Beat eggs. Season with parsley, cheese, and pepper.
Put greens in pie shell or into quiche pan. Pour egg mix over
the greens and bake at 325°F until eggs set and a knife blade
comes out clean. Let set 10 minutes before serving.
is another weed that is very high in vitamins and minerals including
biotin, choline, copper, PABA, rutin, sodium, vitamins B6,12,
D, and C. Infuse it in olive oil and use for any skin disorder.
It is also a good emollient for dry and chapped skin. It is
excellent to add to salad.
of Chickweed and Lettuce Soup
A large bunch of chickweed
1 ½ oz butter
2 oz flour
3 cups stock
salt and pepper
and shred the lettuce. Cut off chickweed roots and wash. Chop
chickweed and sauté with lettuce in a little butter. Melt the
rest of the butter in a separate pan and add flour gradually.
Stir in stock. Heat until mix thickens. Season and add cooked
vegetables. Stir thoroughly, adding cream to taste.
lb fresh chickweed leaves
1 ½ cup milk
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup flour
2 tsp butter, melted
2 TBS soft butter
chickweed. Place in a pan, cover with water, cover the pan,
and place over high heat. Boil rapidly for 2 minutes then plunge
into cold water. Drain and pat dry. Combine milk, eggs, flour,
salt, and melted butter. When well mixed, stir in chopped chickweed
leaves. Fry as you would any other pancakes.