The stinging nettle is a plant found practically all over the world. (7) (7) Stinging nettles are widespread, growing mostly in moist woods often under alders where the soil is soft and black. Inflorescence consists of drooping catkin-like stalks from leaf axils holding dense clusters of small greenish flowers. (At this point, you can also add other delicious ingredients if you’re looking to create a bouillon or insta-soup. You may add it … It may sting for a bit, though, if bare skin touches it. questioning our definitions of “natives” and “invasives”, Photography, Foraging, and the Moments That Transcend Time, For a Daughter of Immigrants, American Soil Offers Plenty to Forage, Any other deliciousness you’d like to include. High in iron, vitamin C, fiber, and a host of other goodies, make it one of the best things you can put into your body. These days, the stinging nettle is well known to modern country folk and even urbanites around the globe. hibernica) North Beach Park, Seattle. Nettles have more protein than nearly all other species in the plant kingdom, and in terms of other nutrients and vitamins, they’re off the charts. Nettle, or stinging nettle, plants are found throughout Europe, Asia, Africa and North America. Our local flora has responded to the unusually (for now) warm temperatures by maturing more quickly. Rather than a dose of chemical nitrates, plants thrive best on organic products that provide not only the NPK but also a range of trace elements. But for generations, traditional herbalists have prescribed stinging nettle to alleviate allergy symptoms and a 1990 double-blind study corroborates its efficacy (using freeze-dried extract of stinging nettle). Imagine our early hominid ancestors exploring outside the cave after a long, cold winter and enough jerked mammoth to convert the first vegetarians. General: Stinging nettle is a perennial dioecious/monoecious dicot plant in the genus Urtica. But let’s leave that for now and talk about something fun: how to take those early season flavors and keep them around for a while! Stinging Nettle Gnudi with Sage Butter & White Truffles Stinging nettles are emerging right on schedule in Puget Sound. But wait! Mario Batali has a great recipe for stinging nettle tagliatelle with sausage and kale. Stir, then let simmer an additional ten minutes oruntil agar is completely dissolved. Leaves opposite, lance- to heart-shaped, 2–6 in. There are many amazing and unique ways to use nettle. These demure shoots are covered with tiny spines that pack a painful punch, not unlike the sting of a fire ant. It’s ok to play around with the ratio; more agar results in a more solid final product. In some parts of the US, stinging nettle is considered an invasive weed due to its ability to self-seed and spread through its root mass. The agar and salt will preserve it, refrigerated, for a couple of months. Cover, and let simmer for 20–30 minutes, until water is dark green. A note on the recipe: since you never know how much nettle you may find, the instructions will be proportional instead of by specific amount. In Langdon Cook's world of scavenging for fresh ingredients,no pain means no nutritional gain. Remove woody stems and chop coarsely. Wear gloves, long sleeves and pants. Cook is a regular columnist for Seattle Magazine, and his writing has appeared in numerous newspapers and magazines. Nettles have more protein than nearly all other species in the plant kingdom, and in terms of other nutrients and vitamins, they’re off the charts. The final product is a super-concentrated nettle explosion. The Romans used to flog themselves with nettles in … It does not kill. Agar agar, a jelly-like substance derived from algae, has been used as a gelatin-like food in Asian cultures for hundreds of years, typically to make fruity desserts. Stinging nettle extract - Stinging Nettle Capsules - Stinging Nettle Tea Most commercial products suggest two to three 300 mg nettle leaf capsules or tablets three times per day for to reduce allergies during allergy season. With nettles, salt (for flavor and as a preservative), water, and agar, you can capture the essence of early spring nettles and create a substance that can be used as a soup or broth base, or added to anything savory you’re cooking for an extra explosion of nettle goodness. Leaves are pointed at the tips, with a heart-shaped base and indented … When water is boiling, add nettles for approximately three minutes. Cook until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. For mild benign prostatic ... Seattle; NPRC, 1997, 9-10. Add a tablespoon to a mug of hot water for a yummy nettle broth. Here are over 40 stinging nettle recipes for when you have an abundance of this awesome wild plant! Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat, and stir in the onion. Add approximately one cup of water per cup of nettles to a pot, and bring to a boil. Bring kitchen shears and a freestanding receptacle, such as a paper bag or basket. Once you’ve tried them, you’ll never want to go back, and although older nettles can still be eaten for a while (until they seed, according to some, when they can damage frail kidneys), you’ll find yourself longing for the flavor of the young ‘uns. Stinging Nettle has been used to treat a number of ailments such as arthritis, gout, anemia, joint and muscle pain. These days, the stinging nettle is well known to modern country folk and even urbanites around the globe. Stinging nettle, Urtica dioica, is an herbaceous plant found growing widespread in moist lowland forests of the Pacific Northwest, including many of the urban forests of Seattle. Now you can use your nettles in any recipe that calls for cooked spinach, such as lasagna, gnocchi or ravioli. We have a lot of it growing in the forested areas of the park. In this video we find out what really happens when you get stung by a stinging nettle. Their taste is bold and spicy, like a wild spinach. Stinging nettle rash happens with direct contact with stinging nettles.They are rich herbal properties. Stinging Nettle. The nettles should no longer be sting-y. The plant is considered an herbaceous perennial, meaning that it has herbal properties and grows back in the same areas year after year. Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) are one of more than 50 varieties of nettle plants worldwide. Snip off the top few whorls of leaves and move to the next one. Ideal nettles will be young and tender, a foot tall. Once you get your nettles home, you’ll need to process them with a quick blanching in boiling water to remove the formic acid what causes the sting. Seattle springtime is already almost over (weather-wise, anyhow). All Rights Reserved. I make it with other types of tagliatelle because I don't know where to find stinging nettles. Our ancestors would have needed to use those weirdly big brains of theirs to take advantage of such enticing fare. The flowers have four stamens and yellow anthers. The sting hurts and will linger, sometimes for several hours. Staminate flower is greyish yellow: four tepals (like sepals). Bring back to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Stinging nettle is a common understory component of riparian communities and also occurs in and adjacent to marshes and meadows and in disturbed areas. There isn’t a consensus on whether it’s a “native” plant or “introduced”. Use it sparingly in savory dishes. The snow has melted, yet the ground is still brown—except for those fetching emerald shoots down by the river. A poultice was to treat eczema, burns, cuts, and hemorrhoids. Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) and English Ivy (Hedera Helix ssp. They’re exceptionally versatile, delicious steamed, sauteed, in sauces, pestos, dips, or incorporated into baked goods and pasta. Urtica dioica, often known as common nettle, stinging nettle (although not all plants of this species sting) or nettle leaf, or just a nettle or stinger, is a herbaceous perennial flowering plant in the family Urticaceae.Originally native to Europe, much of temperate Asia and western North Africa, it is now found worldwide, including New Zealand and North America. March, 2012 The root and above ground parts are used as medicine. The handy immersion blender churns it into a hearty green marvel, which I’ll savor while nursing a careless sting on the wrist, earned from a fine—yet impatient—spring morning in the nettle patch. There’s something to be said for the larger picture here, about reassessing natural cycles and seasons, remodeling the wheel of the year and seasonal ceremonies, questioning our definitions of “natives” and “invasives” as horticultural climate refugees make their ways into our biospheres…. Being one of the first plants to appear in spring, nettle leaves are commonly used to make green, hay tasting teas, tonics and seasonings. Generally, the leaves and stems are coated with hair that are silky, brittle, and hollow and contains 3 chemicals, histamine as a skin irritant, acetylcholine which causes burning sensations and … And because of its diuretic and digestive properties, it is still popular today in the treatment of urinary tract infections. Craving fresh greens, the hominids rush to pick these first signs of spring. Toss a spoonful into the cooker next time you make rice for extra nettle oomph. You might try Whole FoodsWhere can I buy stinging nettles (for cooking) in Seattle? Pulverize agar if not already powdered (a coffee grinder works well, but ripping it up seems to work just fine, too). Where can I buy stinging nettles (for cooking) in Seattle? Or substitute nettles for basil in a classic pesto. Pistillate flower has four tepals in different-sized pairs, are greyish green and hairy. Young nettles have a very unique and distinct flavor, unlike many other wild greens. If it’s not solid enough for you, reheat and dissolve more agar into the mix. People should know what stinging nettle is and how to identify it. ALAS! Stinging nettle grows in rich, acidic soil. That said, there’s definitely something to the flavor of the early nettle shoots, the spring babies who peak out from the forest floor while the air remains cool and before the elders start to fruit. Seattle Magazine Essentials: Wine, Fashion, Dining and More, Seattle Butcher Etana Diaz Talks Culinary Industry Bias in Hulu Documentary, Refind aims to be smart, sustainable and luxurious, Myths Versus Realities in Applying to College During Covid-19, Putting the ‘Social’ in Social Distancing. It’s usually available as a powder, or flaked, or in bricks. This little flavor bomb trick will satisfy your spring nettle flavor yearning and amaze your friends! Look for nettles in moist woodlands, often near water or wetlands. Stinging nettle is used for diabetes and osteoarthritis. I use about 0.25 oz per cup of water. Remove from heat and put into a container. Talk to people who notice such things, and they’ll tell you that for the past couple of years, “early arrival, quick maturity, early departure” seems to be the modus operandi in the local urban plant community. It has been grown, foraged, and harvested for thousands of years. Stinging nettle is a very good fertilizer : it keeps away vermin and is said to A study on how private gardeners make decisions was act as a growth accelerator. One can also dry and keep in an airtight container — this is perfectly acceptable. Here are 6 evidence-based benefits of stinging nettle. It has a single carpel and the stigma is brush-like. ... Stinging Nettle … According to another more recent study, what makes nettle work so well is its anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine properties. Once cooked, the sting is dissipated and it can be eaten like any leafy green. Inflorescence is catkin-like, 48 cm (1.63.2\") long. Our local flora has responded to the unusually (for now) warm temperatures by maturing more quickly. Stinging Nettle is quite a nasty plant to touch, but oral ingestion of pills without spikes results in a moderately potent anti-inflammatory that can reduce the sniffles. How to Eat Stinging Nettles. But, in the interest of maximizing both flavor and space, I’ve developed a way to preserve young nettle essence in a concentrated form using the magic of agar agar. U. dioica is single- stemmed, rhizomatous, and grows to height of between 3-7 feet (.91-2.13 meters) at maturity. Seattle springtime is already almost over (weather-wise, anyhow). If you've ever been "stung" by a nettle during an outdoor excursion, the plants are probably near the bottom of the list of ingredients you'd like to add to your diet. If you have ever had arthritis or carpal tunnel, stinging yourself deliberately provides dramatic relief due to the formic acid and histamines that the plant helpfully injects into you. Organic Stinging Nettle Gathered from right here around our pond, Stinging Nettle is one of the most nutrient dense plants available. Clustered, erect, leafy stems with spreading roots and stinging hairs. If you live in Seattle (like me), you must live within shouting distance of a farmers' market. Here’s my recipe for Raw Stinging Nettle Pesto: 5-6 packed cups raw stinging nettle (you can choose to wash or not) 3/4 c parmesan – grated (the food processor will take care of it, too, if you wish to throw in a chunk instead) 2-3 Tbsp lemon juice; 1/2 c toasted pine nuts (or … Overview Information Stinging nettle is a plant. My go-to dish usually is a simple soup made with caramelized onions, potatoes and stock, with a pinch of nutmeg. Place in fridge. Return nettles to the water. I've written reams in the past about my weed crush on nettles, so click on the link above if you want to learn more about their natural history and culinary applications. The kind I get looks like this: This stuff is fantastic, because, like gelatin, it causes liquids into which it is incorporated to firm when cooled, and it does so really quickly. I make nettle beer, nettle flatbread, nettle tonic, and eat them as a vegetable. Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) has been a staple in herbal medicine since ancient times, such as to treat arthritis and back pain. Add the agar plus salt, about 1 tsp per cup of liquid, to the nettle mixture. After a few hours, depending on how much agar you used, you should have something that’s the consistency of a jelly, or even a solid brick. The folks at the ELC can help with identification or give more information it. Pepper, garlic, onion , bay leaves— whatever your palate fancies.). Does not boost testosterone despite being claims to, although it can help Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia and … A distant mint relative, stinging nettles are equally invasive and need to be sternly managed . I get excited about the first nettles of the year. Root system: U. dioica has a rhizome with lateral roots emanating from the main rhizome, and rootlets branching off from the lateral roots. … Female flowers in separate clusters near top. I’ve found them in Seattle as early as late January, though early this month is more typical. Stinging nettles grow from 3 feet to occasionally as high as 8 feet. Documented accounts of its use date as far back as 1200 BC, and its uses are widespread. Leaves are about 2-5 inches long with jagged edges, found in opposing pairs along the upper half of the stalk. So, how to extend the flavor season for young nettles? Their taste is bold and spicy, like a wild spinach. The stinging nettle, Urtica dioica, is a perennial plant that grows at low elevations west of the Cascades. At the moment, it’s still quite possible to head out to your local foraging spot and find a plethora of delicious, young stinging nettles (Urtica dioica). Identification. It’s essentially flavorless by itself, and so it’s a fantastic medium for capturing flavors and keeping them around for later (in the late summer, I’ll share my salal/oregon grape agar jelly recipe, too!). ©Copyright 2020 Tiger Oak Media. And that’s it! It prefers wet soil and is often seen next to creeks or stagnant bodies of water. In my humble (and perhaps a bit plant-biased) opinion, Stinging Nettle is one of the most amazing plants in the Pacific Northwest. Flowers: Stinging nettle is a dioecious (staminate and pistillate flowers on different plants) plant with very small flowers. Nettle leaves are rich in iron, calcium and other nutrients. Some people blanch, then freeze, but space in my freezer is limited. Walking the Washington woods snipping leaves becomes both an enjoyable hike and a productive way to grab some greens for dinner. Now, I’m the kind of guy who will figure out a way to eat nettles at any stage in their life cycle. Stinging nettle will grow in dense clusters, and stalks can reach 5-8 feet at maturity. Mine is the Columbia City one, which alas only operates from spring to fall, but lots of the others (West Seattle, University District to name two) are open year-round. Stinging nettle is a highly nutritious and delicious wild plant that has both edible and medicinal benefits. It can be found in most Asian markets, or in trendy western “health food stores,” or ordered online. Stinging nettles are both an harbinger of the spring growing season, and one of the Northwest's most easily foraged-for foods. long, coarsely toothed.
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