Cooking with Weeds - food inspiration from edible weeds

Be Inspired... by weeds as Food from the Wild

Edible weeds are all around us, yet we probably pass by numerous colonies of them every day without giving a second thought. After all they are weeds, aren't they?

Well, going back in time (check out the History section) you find that many of the species what we now term as 'weeds' or, indeed, 'wild plants', were once cultivated for kitchen use. With the vast array of new flavours, ingredients and food processing technology available to modern cooks these forgotten plants present an exciting opportunity for those who like their culinary adventures.

To be truthful some of the wild plants that are bandied around as being edible are only fit for purpose once they have been doused in masking sauces, or cooked until on the point of death. Others take just too much time to pick (yields being small or being hard to find)... which is fine if you don't have a busy lifestyle, but for most people remains an unrealistic option.

And then there's a core of really excellent edible weedy plants. Much maligned nettles (Urtica dioica and U. urens) make an excellent spinach-like substitute when young, and are generally available for a large part of the year. The sorrels provide an acid-taste that can be used as an alternative to lemon and rhubarb. And then there are well-known species such as dandelion (Taraxacum officinalis) and Chickweed (Stellaria media) which generally plague gardens and allotments. There's so much out there - don't be afraid to have a try.

dandelion an edible weeds in the kitchen