Week of November 25 - Thanksgiving Weed Walk - garlic mustard, wild carrot and more

Monday, November 24, 2014 7:25 PM | Anonymous

Thanksgiving Salad Weed Walk
Though it is cold (and colder), there are still green plants for our salads. Here are more than a dozen different things we found to eat in a ten minute walk. All of the plants in our Thanksgiving Salad were found growing around a residence for elders on the banks of the Esopus Creek where it meets the Hudson River in Saugerties.

Garlic Mustard (Alliaria officinalis)
Our official major salad plant, for which we give endless thanksgiving. This hardy green will be available until it is buried by snow. For now, it is the main ingredient in all our late fall, early winter salads. Not too bitter, and not too spicy, but just right for colder weather. Let’s pick lots of this one.

Plantain (Plantago majus)
Plantain is one hardy plant. The little leaves are tough at this time of the year and will need to be finely chopped into our salad. I love their “woodsmoke and friendship” smell. No more than two leaves per plant, please, into your basket. We want lots of plantain next spring too.

Wild Carrot Tops (Daucua carota)
Last month I couldn’t find any first-year leaves of wild carrot to show the students at a class. Now, they seem to be everywhere. Wonder where they were hiding. Although they are a little hairy, wild carrot leaves will be exceptionally tasty in our Thanksgiving salad, so let’s pick a lot.

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)
Remember that dandelion leaves are at their sweetest and most palatable after the first frosts, so gather all you can find, without taking too many from any plant. Cut them into smallish pieces, to improve the texture and to spread the bitter, mineral-y taste throughout the salad.

~ Thanksgiving Weed Walk, contd. ~

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