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Sauteed Nettles
    Recipes for Locally Grown Foods

Nettles -- For those of you reading this who have been enjoying these fine plants for some time, forgive the next rendition -- if you are in my camp however, and you either haven't tried eating nettles yet maybe you will after reading this. Nettles - those prickly plants that everyone avoids can actually be eaten. I am familiar with Nettle tea, I just never knew that you could cook nettles and eat them just like spinach. So today, we bought a bag of nettles at the Farmers Market and decided to give them a try after hearing how wonderful they are and how versatile for cooking. They can be sauteed or used in soups and recipes that call for spinach. We blanched a handful of them in boiling water for a few minutes. Then sauteed them with garlic and olive oil. In minutes they were ready to try. I didn't hesitate - The flavor was similar to spinach but with a slight minty flavor. Who knew? Well apparently many people know about the relatively abundant edible plant. Nettle has been used in the medicinal world for nose bleeds, heart problems, anemia, broken bones, poor circulation, intestinal disorders and more. Nettles are also used in commercial and skin care products because it is believed they have cleansing and antiseptic properties. So next time you want to try something completely different consider nettles -- they are rich in protein and Vitamin A. They also have high levels of minerals such as calcium, manganese, phosphorous and high levels of easily absorbable amino acids. Futhermore, their tingling sensation is deadened by cooking them and the best time to eat them is now (March) - before they flower. Enjoy!

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