If you are gardener, you are used to pulling weeds. With the right might mind set, it can be a meditative process. With the right knowledge, it can be a treasure hunt. Many of those pesky weeds are tasty additions to your salad bowl. The trick is to be sure you identify the plant you are digging out correctly. Below are our 3 favorite of the common weeds that are easy to distinguish and delightful to munch. Remember that this list is for organic gardeners only. Weed killer takes out our favorite edibles and makes the fragile greens toxic.
When you’re out weeding your lawn or preparing your garden for spring planting, save those Dandelion greens. They make a tasty addition to your salads and sandwiches. Check your dandelion for smooth leaves and hollow flower stems with milky latex. Dandelions have other look alikes but are simple to spot once you have id a few. Fry up Dandelion buds for a terrific topping to that fresh salad or sprinkled in your next wrap. Dandelions are a gentle, healthy spring liver cleanser, one that benefits organic gardeners the most.
Chickweed is very easy to identify by its single line of “hairs” on the stem. It is the first herb to emerge in the spring and sometimes shows up in the fall once the rains return. Chickweed is tasty sprinkled on salad. It has a fresh flavor that can be mistaken for sprouts. Try it on a bagel with cream cheese. It is best gathered before it flowers.
Plantain is not often regarded as a salad green due to it fibrous leaves but in early spring, it is a taste treat that matches beet greens very well. By the time spring has drawn near, winter kale has lost its appeal and yet an invigorating taste is needed to complement new greens. Collect the newly emerging plantain leaves, wash them and mince them finely. Sprinkle them with lemon juice or balsamic vinegar for a minute before throwing them onto your salad. Delicious!