One my classic spring dishes is weed salad. First, you plant a few rows of hardy greens. Some possibilities include spring mix, mizuna, spinach, turnips, beets, bok choi, ta tsoi, or anything else you plant “as soon as the soil can be worked.” Then, after a couple of weeks, you go thin and weed them. Trim the roots from the thinnings, and toss into a bowl along with the leaves any edible weeds. I can generally pick enough salad for one in about 5 minutes. Some of my favorite weeds are wood and French sorrel, violet leaves, young dandelion greens, tender plantain leaves, and lamb’s quarters. Purslane has a slightly mucilaginous texture, but it’s quite good for you so add a little but not more than 20%. Above, you’ll see a photo of my newest favorite: blood sorrel. It’s absolutely beautiful and has a sharp lemon flavor. A similar flavor can be found in other sorrels.
It’s remarkably fun to eat your weeds. I always feel a blend of poetic vengence and smug pleasure about using my garden’s resources so efficient and sustainably. Try it. Or I’ll share some, if you don’t have any weeds of your own!
Always identify as edible and wash all greens before eating.
1 handful baby greens, such as spinach, turnip, mustard, mizuna, etc.
1 handful mixed wild greens, including violet leaves, sorrel, chickweed, purslane, dandelion leaves, etc.
4-6 herb sprigs, including chives, mint, thyme, etc.
1 t balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
2 t olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Toss together. Enjoy!
Linked into Seasonal Sunday.