Orties, nettles. They’re abundant at this time of year, free, you can gather them while in confinement and they’re good for you too! What’s not to like?
Obviously been watching Masterchef too much so decided to do ‘nettles four ways’ after collecting a huge basket full on my morning walk. Do be careful where you pick them from, that they have not been contaminated - I don’t pick from our boundaries with the neighbouring farmers as they spray and fertilise their fields - and choose the tips which are the sweetest and smell lovely. First, a cup of nettle, lemon and honey tea, reputedly good for easing seasonal hayfever and was great for my sore throat.
Secondly, I baked some, drizzled with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt at 150 for 30 minutes. These I served on top of our lunch time salad, the little salty crunch was great with avocado and feta.
The third way was to dry them in my dehydrator, I’ll powder them when I’ve finished to use as a boosting addition to smoothies and salads later in the year when the supply in the garden are too big to eat.
Lastly, I wilted the remaining nettles in boiling water and cooled rapidly, these I froze to put in soups and stews later in the year, when the ‘hungry gap’ hits the potager.
Feeling very frugal and healthy from my stay at home greens, and my LSH (long suffering Husband) is still being vaguely polite about my foraging, so they can’t have tasted too bad..
I love nettles, and encourage them to stay, around the edges of the potager. Later in the year I will use them to make fertiliser for the garden, and the ones left around the land will host a range of native fauna.