Fruit and Vegetable Guide
Late Winter, Early Spring
Description: Edible wild greens include dandelion greens, purslane, ramps, sorrel, lamb’s quarters, chickweed, chicory, garlic mustard, shepherd’s purse, fiddleheads, wild prickly lettuce, mache, sour grass, and onion grass. Native varieties vary according to geography and climate.
Selection: Use caution! In many cases, poisonous plants closely resemble and grow near the edible ones. Pick wild greens only if you’re certain they have not been sprayed with pesticides or herbicides. Most edible wild greens are best when picked very early in spring, when they are young and tender.
Storage and handling: Refrigerate up to 3 days wrapped in slightly damp paper towels in a plastic bag. Wash by swishing in a bowl of cold water until no grit is present. Dry in a salad spinner or make your own: place the greens in a clean pillowcase (one reserved for this purpose), take it outside, and swing it around until they’re dry.
Preparation: Most greens can be sautéed, boiled, or wilted by adding to a hot dressing.
Serving suggestions: Use raw in salads if tender. Chop dandelion greens and stir into a warm bacon dressing (SIS, p. 43). Add fresh greens to soups. Try sorrel with rhubarb in a crisp dessert (p 73).
Nutrients: Varies; some varieties are high in Vitamins A, C, K.
1 lb raw = varies
© 2011 Mennonite Central Committee