What we consider to be a nasty weed, that grows in every corner of urban or wild spaces and stings us on top it, is the stinging nettle. The leaves and stems are covered with hollow stinging hairs called trichomes. They act like hypodermic needles, injecting histamine and other chemicals producing a stinging sensation when we touch them.
They have a flavor a bit to spinach and are rich in vitamin A and C, Iron, potassium, magnesium and calcium. So voilà! Everything we need in a weed!
Now they are in bloom and full of seeds! The seeds have protein too and taste nutty. You can throw them into a salad or simply caramelize them quickly in a fraying pan with a bit of sugar or honey. Simply wonderful!
(ha!, I have been eating lots of them in the last couple of weeks and recently had my blood checked. The doctor asked my why my blood is so iron rich, if I'm eating a lot of meat these days?)
Summer salad with wild herb salad, cornflower leaves, black currants, caramalised nettle seeds and cucumber.