NEW! Google Custom Search

Loading

If you can't beat 'em, eat 'em....

assibams's picture

I've been using all kinds of wild herbs in the past, and have now become more adventurous.


As some of you might remember I have been complaining about this obnoxious weed I have in my garden, ground elder. I knew that it is an old herb, used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. But I could never get myself to really use it, that's how much I hated it *g*


BUT, I found a recipe for the most delicious lemonade! I took about a handful of the ground elder leaves (trying to take the younger, smaller ones), a sprig of ground ivy ('creeping charlie') another prominent weed in my garden, however better behaved and prettier, a sprig of mint. Bruised the leaves slightly and steeped them in apple juice for 3-4 hours. To make the lemonade all you need to do is use 1 part of the infused juice and 1 part carbonated water. Yummy!


Next I am going to try using the ground elder leaves in a spinach like preparation.


I also found many interesting recipes using dandelion blossoms, from jelly, to 'honey', and then some dandelion 'wine'.



Resist the temptation to over-clean. After all, how many times do you need to kill the same germ.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Herm Albright

evelyn's picture

(post #37466, reply #1 of 19)

good going on your part! You can also steam the dandelion greens and serve them as a 'salad', dressed with evoo and lemon juice. I like the greens especially served alongside a mild-tasting fish.

Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they're going to catch you in next.

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
assibams's picture

(post #37466, reply #3 of 19)

I've often used the greens for salads, especially in spring, when the leaves are small and crunchy.


Do you steam the larger leaves, too? I've only used the small ones, my dad 'taught' me to prefer the small alpine dandelions, that have reddish, short, thin leaves. Not that I can find too many of those here *g*



Resist the temptation to over-clean. After all, how many times do you need to kill the same germ.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Herm Albright

evelyn's picture

(post #37466, reply #5 of 19)

those are the best - yes, we use the young, tender leaves. We also use the sturdier, older ones, but those need to be boiled.

Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they're going to catch you in next.

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
DeannaS's picture

(post #37466, reply #2 of 19)

I made dandelion wine one year. We ended up dumping it out. It was a fun experiment, but we didn't like the way it tasted. Of course, it could easily have been our mediocre wine making skills.

We have lots of creeping charlie - if you come up with good uses for that let me know. Though, I beg to differ on the well-behaved aspect of it. :)

"As for butter versus margarine, I trust cows more than chemists." - Joan Dye Gussow

assibams's picture

(post #37466, reply #4 of 19)

I'll keep my eyes open on the uses of creeping charlie. In my garden it is definitly not a bad weed at all, plus a lot easier to remove from areas it isn't wanted.


The ground elder, OTOH, will grow back if you leave a 5mm root particle.... Cutting hasn't been helpful, either. I should borrow some guinea pigs or bunnies, they love it.



Resist the temptation to over-clean. After all, how many times do you need to kill the same germ.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Herm Albright

Eisje's picture

(post #37466, reply #7 of 19)

I hear your pain about ground elder, I've been battling it ever since we moved... have even contemplated on getting a goat, they are supposed to love it. =) Good luck and I would really love to see recipes with ground elder that are tasty!


Olena

wonka's picture

(post #37466, reply #6 of 19)

My parents made it too, when I was a teen. It is definitely an aquired taste.

Rich02's picture

(post #37466, reply #14 of 19)

Was always told that you shouldn't touch dandalion or you'll wet the bed.  called them pee da beds.  Heard today that  the French have a saying instead of "Pushing up Daisies they say "Eat the dandelion from the root"  Oh well, it's late.  Rich

It's not what you say or what you do- it's how you make people feel

We did what we did when we knew what we knew, now that we know better, we should do the better thing.   Maya Angelou

MadMom's picture

(post #37466, reply #15 of 19)

Never heard that about dandelions, LOL.  I do love the French saying, though.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

mireillec's picture

(post #37466, reply #17 of 19)

Yes, we say: "Manger les pissenlits par la racine".
textual traduction: "To eat dandelions from the root.".

papa2's picture

(post #37466, reply #18 of 19)

That helps explain a childhood memory.  My Mother's mother was from Ireland and my Father's family were "American"  Thats what we were all told. (all ten of us)  As time goes buy we are finding out that my Fathers family came from Alsace-Lorraine and as we grew up during WW II it was more diplomatic to say we were American.  Different times for sure.  That also explains my love of sauerkraut and snails.  Rich

mireillec's picture

(post #37466, reply #19 of 19)

How interesting.
During WW II. Alsace & Lorraine was part of Germany, so politically incorrect to be from.
How times change.

drussell's picture

(post #37466, reply #16 of 19)

Actually the French word for dandelion is "pissenlit", and lit means bed. So guess what dandelion means in French!

MadMom's picture

(post #37466, reply #8 of 19)

Do you make lemonade without lemons?



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

assibams's picture

(post #37466, reply #9 of 19)

In German you can :-) 'Limonade' definintely has its origin as a lemon/citrus (carbonated over here) drink, but the usage has been extended to other concoctions as well.


Report: the drink is very refreshing and tasty. Not sure which flavor the ground elder contributes, but the result is good.


Today I made cream of asparagus soup that called for tarragon and chervil. Since I don't have any chervil this year, I subbed ground elder instead. Again, I'm not sure how differently the soup would have tasted without the herb, but it was very good. DH ate most of it before I even got to the table, grrrrr. 



Resist the temptation to over-clean. After all, how many times do you need to kill the same germ.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Herm Albright

Jean's picture

(post #37466, reply #10 of 19)

By ground elder do you mean what we know as Bishop's weed?


Sometimes I wonder--why is that Frisbee getting bigger?--and then it hits me.



http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/
help to provide free mammograms for women in need
assibams's picture

(post #37466, reply #11 of 19)

Yup, that's the one.


With the masses that grow in my garden I think I could feed a family of guinea pigs or two....wonder if I can rent one *g*



Resist the temptation to over-clean. After all, how many times do you need to kill the same germ.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Herm Albright

DeannaS's picture

(post #37466, reply #12 of 19)

Hm...also called snow on the mountain? I have this stuff, too. Hm.... It's much better behaved than the creeping charlie for me. And, much more decorative, too. I'd never thought about trying to eat it....

"As for butter versus margarine, I trust cows more than chemists." - Joan Dye Gussow

Gretchen's picture

(post #37466, reply #13 of 19)

Oh, really--that. I kind of like it, and think I planted it in our front bed!!

Gretchen

Gretchen