This is a good spring soup; the nettles (Urtica dioica) are packed with nourishing vitamins and minerals that can help build natural immunity and protect from infections after a long winter.
2 tsbs (25 g) butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3 medium (400 g) potatoes, peeled and chopped
450 g freshly picked nettle tops (wear gloves to collect), washed
1 qt (1 L) vegetable stock
2/3 cup (150 ml) heavy cream
Freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. In a large pan, melt the butter and gently sauté the onion and garlic for 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and nettles and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the stock and cover, then bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.
2. Puree the ingredients with a handheld bender, then stir in the cream and season with a little nutmeg, salt and pepper. Reheat and serve at once.
USE: Makes enough for 6
This is another simple, tasty way to get the benefits of Urtica dioica. The young spring tips are the most tender and tastiest. Just cook a big handful of the young nettle tips (about 150 g) in boiling water for about 2 minutes. Drain, then place in a blender along with some freshly grated Parmesan, 2 chopped garlic cloves, a handful of pine nuts and about 1/3 cup (80 ml) olive oil. Blend until smooth, then spoon over freshly cooked pasta.
Recipe courtesy of Grow Your Own Drugs, by James Wong (Readers Digest Books, 2009 Silver River Productions Limited. All rights reserved.)
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