Things to forage in Febuary!
Lots of Greens;
- Dandelion Leaves
- Nettles and White Nettle or Dead Nettle
- Good king Henry and Fat Hen
- Goose grass
Always forage away from the road (pollution) and not on the edge of public dog walks if you can help it (dogs like to ‘water’ wild plants)! Always forage in places you have permission to only and do not over forage!
Greens are such a fab thing to forage while they’re in abundance because you can prepare cook and freeze.
High in vitamins, they are great to drop into stews, soups and curry!
I have noticed some of the greens I associate with summer are around now, maybe it’s because everything is lush and green from the rain?
Today I am talking about WHITE NETTLES or DEAD NETTLES.
These Nettles are not stingy, the ‘fur’ on them is soft, the leaves are slightly less jagged compared to the common nettle and a lighter lime green colour.
They also have pretty white flowers (pictured below) and the more mature stems can have a reddish purple colour.
The purpose of this picture is so you can see the flowers (I would pick Lush green leaves to eat rather than the ones shown here)
Above you can see the red/purple hue to the stem.
Most people just eat the leaves, the flowers are also edible.
Cooked Nettles are alot like spinach they wilt down to nothing so you need ALOT to make a decent sized handful once cooked.
I start by stripping the leaves and thoroughly washing and draining them.
Then into a pan on a low-med heat I cook them stirring occasionally until they are completely wilted (approx 10 mins).
A good way to check if they are cooked is to eat one, if they still feel ‘furry’ in your mouth they need further cooking.
Next unless you’re adding them straight to your meal, prepare an empty ice-cube tray.
Once they have cooled, ball them into small amounts, squeeze excess water out and squish them into your ice-cube trays and freeze.
Once frozen you can pop them out and put them in a labeled freezer bag/container and they will be ready for you to add to future meals much like cooked frozen spinach.
In a future Post I will put up Recipe for ‘Chick pea Curry’ with wilted foraged white nettle leaves and home-made chapatis. 🙂 x