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Monday, May 17, 2010

I'll Be Nice to Nettles if Nettles be Nice to Me

Apparently it's Be Nice to Nettles Week here in the UK and I have juct been at the notment manhandling some of my own. Not that I really claim to own the nettles but I am allowed at the moment to interfere with them if I want to. They sting! I am quite used to it from working on this plot and today I decided to see if the adage was true that if you grab them quick they dont sting.

Also today Chris tells me on Facebook that he used to EAT them - raw - and that it doesnt sting either. And last week there were two kids at the art club and they said they ate the nettles raw and it didnt sting.

All this not stinging...its almost as if the whole thing was just a myth spread around to turn people against nettles, and now there is a Be Nice week to restore the soured relationship between the two species, and get us all to realise that actually nettles are really nice.

But let me tell you, they DO sting, even when you grab them, and I will be nice to them when they are nice to me!

Have you got a nettle experience to share? Do they sting you??

DISCLAIMER I can't quite say 'no nettles were harmed in the making of this post' but actually I am very nice to the nettles in my care and let lots of them stay where they are with only occasional shoves when they are completely smothering my rocket or fennel or what not. I even wrote a Pamphlet about them. Although I do eat them (cooked) and I suppose they would consider that not to be very nice of me at all.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Blewitts Again

One nice thing about this project is learning slowly and developing a deepening relationship with the natural processes. Last year I found wood blewitts growing on the plot and this year they came back. They seem to be rather out of season but I am still fairly sure that's what they are! I ate them and enjoyed it a lot, in fact more than last time. And its very satisfying to see that they came back again. Unless they are different bnut its still interesting.

This time the recipe involved frying onions and Alexanders with the mushrooms in rapeseed oil from the local shop (Squire's) and at the end, stirring in the wild garlic pesto my brother and his wife made.

And here are the pictures:

Baby Blewitts among the baby alexanders

Ready to eat - I left about half in to reseed for the next crop
Rapeseed oil, wild pesto and alexanders ready
Chop everything up and fry with the oil and a squeeze of grapefruit juice. Mix with noodles, top with yoghurt and paprika and settle down for lunch with a good book.