Monday, December 2, 2013

I haven't died....

I admire those who can blog on a daily or weekly basis.  They seem to have a bit more time than I do or it is their mission in life.  I, on the other hand, am a caregiver and this occupies a lot of my time so I have less time for writing these days.  No matter....

What's up right now.  Here in north Georgia the henbit is up along with the chickweed and the curly dock.  Now I may have written about these incredible edibles in an earlier missive - to be honest - I have a hard time knowing what day it is - but let me refresh your memories.

Henbit is a wonderful tonic kind of herb.  It is a mint but doesn't taste like mint.  The best way to eat it is braised in a bit of chicken or vegetable stock.  Not too much, just enough to wilt the plant.  I usually collect the tops - about two sets of leaves down the stem and, if in flower, I also take the flower as I figure a bloom is worth a lot more nutrition than naked leaves.  Back to the cooking.  Cook the collected leaves under a lid so that the plant wilts and softens up.  Then, add a bit of butter and a snitch of vinegar - we in the south love vinegar on greens but in this instance it really adds a bright note of flavor.  Then, eat.

Curly Dock is another delicious greenery and so plentiful.  I always collect the youngest leaves although the older leaves aren't bad.  I just don't collect the antique leaves if you get my drift.  After washing, put a pat of butter into a medium heated frying pan, melt, and then add the greens.  Again, if there is moisture on the leaves just put a lid on and let wilt.  The Curly Dock is a precursor of spinach so it cooks quickly and has a lovely tart quality which is better than spinach if you ask me.

I know I did a thought or two on Chickweed so I won't belabor the point here.  Just make sure to wash it before you eat it.  You can guess why.  Although I love the outdoors and am definitely not a germaphobe, washing your greenery that comes close to the ground is a good idea.

Apparently there are some fungus to be had yet this season although I haven't seen anything I can eat right now.  I did get a note from one person saying she had found a lion's mane growing on a tree near her house.  Now that is a 'shroom you don't want to miss.  Slice it up, saute in butter, add a drop of lemon juice, a bit of salt and pepper.... voila!  You have a feast that is both nutritious and health-provoking.

Have a wonderful December and eat well!