It seems that we confused more than just a few people on Facebook. In our last veggie box we received a packet of stinging nettles. Yes, the things you have growing in the garden that can give you a nasty sting. You can eat them. The important thing is to make sure that you prepare them properly so that they can no longer hurt you.
So we started doing so research on what we could possibly use nettles for. The answer is that there are copious amounts of recipes that accommodate nettles. Whether you want a soup, spinakotta, a pie or even a pesto, nettles are your guy. Another way to figure this out is to think about what you would use spinach for and replace the spinach with nettles. Except for salad. Don’t make that mistake.
If you are not going to use the nettles in a soup, you will need to blanch them. This removes the stings from the leaves. Put a pot of water on the stove and bring it to the boil. Add some course salt and the nettle leaves and boil for a few minutes. Now you can remove them and they will be safe to eat.
We decided to go with soup, in which case, the leaves will get boiled in the cooking process, so no need to blanch them. We used this nettle soup recipe, and there are some other recipe ideas on the same page. It really is a wonderful meal, though next time I will not use green pepper stock, and hopefully I will have bought a blending stick that works. Sadly mine died…
Make sure not to put more than a tablespoon of yogurt in the soup bowl. Chris figured this out the hard way.