Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Taking the sting out of nettles...

This morning I opened my front door to find a crate full of stinging nettles. Sweet Spencer had dropped them off. I guess they were left over from Tuesday's pick-up. Rejected? Excess harvest?

OK. Mustn't waste them! Thanks to shareholder Michael, I'm going to make a gallon or two of his nettle soup recipe (while simultaneously preparing a planning commission hearing regarding the Food & Flowers Freedom Act and filing taxes).

Michael says of his nettle soup "it was a total experiment but it came out fantastically" - Thanks for trying the CSA challenge Michael!!


Bunch of nettles (about the size of your head), thick stems trimmed -

In a big saucepan, sautee finely 3-4 tablespoons chopped green garlic/shallot/onion or combination in
butter/olive oil for about 5 minutes until soft - avoid browning

Turn up the heat and dump in the nettles (USE TONGS OR GLOVES TO HANDLE NETTLES (they will lose sting after five minutes in the heat) along with about 1/2 cup of sherry vinegar or wine

Stir around just until the nettles get limp and then add enough water to cover (between a pint and a quart but not too much or the soup will be runny)

Bring to a boil then low simmer for 10 minutes

Add a cup of nonfat greek yogurt or creme fraiche, salt and pepper to taste

Puree with immersion blender or in a blender - serve with more yogurt or creme fraiche on the side.

Michael, you rock. Thank you for this!



  1. GNOCCHI WITH PESTO D'ORTICA (Gnocchi with stinging Nettle pesto)

    150g Fresh, boiled nettle leaves (to make Pesto d'ortica)
    600g Potatoes
    4 Sun-dried tomatoes
    50g pistachio nuts
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    200g Wholemeal flour
    1 teaspoon of sea salt.
    Boil potatoes, cut into pieces and pass them through a vegetable filter. Paste in the flour until well mixed, then separate the mixture into thumb-size lumps, or "gnocchi", cover them in sieved flour and leave them to sit for an hour or so.

    In the meantime blend the tomatoes with the cooked nettle leaves, pistachio's and oil until creamy.

    Drop the gnocchi into boiling, salted water and when they rise to the surface they are cooked.

    Add the mixture to the gnocchi, decorate with a few pistachio nuts and enjoy!!!

  2. Here are several more NETTLE ideas: