So, Farmer Steven gives you a bag of Stinging Nettles in your CSA box… umm, thanks?
Yes! Actually he gave you a ‘Super Food’, a healthy little weed that, albeit a literal ‘pain’ if you’re not wearing gloves, packs a powerful punch of nutrition and flavor. They’re teeming with Vitamins C and A, iron and fiber.
The tiny, hollow hairs on the nettle leaves and stems are what you want to avoid. They inject itchy histamines if you come into direct contact, so trust us – you want to wear gloves when handling them.
But they ARE worth the trouble! Once the nettles have been steamed, blanched or otherwise cooked, the stinging is no longer an issue. What remains are really nutritious, delicate greens with a sweet spinach flavor, if you can image that.
They have been recognized for their anti-inflammatory properties and used in natural medicines for ages. But the great part is that they’re delicious! Use them in any dish where you would use spinach. We particularly like them with eggs – try them in an omelette for starters. We think you’ll be hooked…