Thursday, June 14, 2012

Garlickly Lambs-quarters with Orange Juice

In my CSA box, I found lambs-quarters, which excited me because I'd read about them in my foraging books, but never tried to pick them (or find them for that matter). Some people apparently don't like them very much because they can have a strong flavor -- though not as strong as spinach, and keeping that in mind, I decided to try putting them together in a way that would hide that strong flavor if I found it unpleasant. I also decided to make only half the lambs-quarters I received so that if I didn't like them I didn't have to eat a lot of them and if I did like them, well, I'd have some leftover.

I should mention that other common names for lambs-quarters include goosefoot (apt, based on leaf-shape) and pigweed (because pigs like to eat it). According to Edible and Medicinal Plants in Wild (and Not So Wild) Places, lambs-quarters were brought to the United States from Europe. It usually grows 3-5 feet high, has no odor, and is very common. It does well in poor or disturbed soil, so look for it in overgrown fields, vacant lots, and (unsprayed) urban parks. Apparently it dries well and can be easily reconstituted (something new to try, perhaps).

So, when I prepared my lambs-quarters, the reasonable thing to do, it seemed, was to continue to use the ingredients I received from my CSA share -- plus add a little frozen OJ concentrate that I tend to have in my freezer. This dish turned into just enough for a small side dish and I loved it. I love the rich, green-earthly flavor, the tenderness of the plants, the way they smelled cooking. If you can get your hands on some lambs-quarters, do it. Then try this recipe. If you absolutely can't get your hands on them, you can use spinach. But go find lambs-quarters. Now.

Garlicky Lambs-quarters with Orange Juice
1 teaspoon oil (I used sunflower)
1/2 large garlic scape, chopped
2 tablespoons spring onion, chopped
1 large handful lambs-quarters, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons frozen OJ concentrate
Dash salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium heat, then add the garlic scape and onion.
Garlic Scape & Onion

Saute 1-2 minutes, or until onion becomes translucent. Add the lambsquarters, orange juice, salt, and pepper and saute another 1-2 minutes, until lambsquarters wilt. Serve immediately.
Just before serving

No comments:

Post a Comment