For the Love of Nettles

Nettles!! Few people think to use nettles in their food, but they are truly amazing. Super for increasing energy, nettles also thicken the hair, enrich the blood, and boost the immune system.

This time of year, you can look for nettles while you're out on a hike - they do need to be picked with care though, as they can sting! Sting bad. Real bad. But, if you wear gloves and don't eat them fresh and raw, you'll be fine. How DO you use nettles? Well, I like to steam fresh nettles just as I would spinach leaves. They cook quickly, leaving behind all of their stinging qualities. Add a little olive oil and lemon juice for some flavor - plus some fresh garlic and sea salt. Yum!

However, dried nettles are even easier to use. You can dry your own, or purchase them already dried from the health food store. They're very inexpensive and versatile. I like to add them to teas and green drinks mostly. But you can also add them to foods as a flavor and nutrition booster.

Here's my super quick and easy recipe for Nettle Energy Snacks:

1/2 cup raw walnuts
3/4 cup raisins
3 tablespoons dried nettles
pinch of sea salt

Blend all of the ingredients in a food processor, then shape into small balls. Store in the fridge (in an airtight container) for several weeks. I like these because they're very high in Omega-3s, iron, fiber, and other nutrients. And they really perk me up when I'm on the go or need a little energy. Hope you enjoy!! xo

3 comments:

  1. Hey Tess, hope all is well with your projects and such.
    This article is very interesting. I've noticed nettles in a lot of articles lately. I'm going to get some dry nettles as recommended above, as I never see fresh nettles around here.
    Ooh, and I have everything for your energy snack except the nettles-I'm making them!

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  2. I'm so happy that you wrote about nettles. The other day while walking in a nearby park, I saw two women, with rubber gloves up to their elbows and long sleeved shirt, picking something ... very carefully. I asked what they were collecting and it was nettles. They told me that they also save the cooking juice ... nettle tea ... and they drink it.

    I'm going to grab gloves and protective gear and try them out. :) One question ... should they be picked at a certain time in their growth? I've noticed that in the last couple of weeks, the nettles have gotten huge ... and no pickers. So I'm guessing that they perhaps become tough when they get too big.

    Thanks for sharing this!

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  3. Awesome, Stella! Thx for sharing.

    SF, that's a good question. It's hard for me to say w/o actually seeing them. As long as they're not TOO big & overgrown, they'd probably be good for drying & using that way. But for eating fresh (steamed or sauteed), the medium, smaller plants are the tastiest. Let me know how it goes!

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