A simple meal .

 

Just around the corner the Nettle patch is looking up with new ,young leaves . I reach down and grab few with bear hands allowing the prickly contact to awaken me into a new day.

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In Gratitude I fill my basket feeling so loved and so abundant . Earth , The Mother is gifting us with her first bounty , in turn I give her my Soul’s songs and dreams .

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I dry some of the fresh Nettle  and the rest I rinse and start preparing for a simple meal I have learned from Grandma . It used to be our Spring feast and to this day I crave its taste. Besides , when we come out the winter and we feel weak , Nettle comes to the rescue . Its  health benefits made this humble plant into a superstar .

The recipe is simple . Boil water with a pinch of salt and throw the rinsed nettles in for two three minutes . Drain and chop but save the broth. You will use some later in the recipe and the rest you can drink , rinse your hair or dye your favorite scarf with .

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Saute’ one onion and few cloves of garlic in two -three tablespoons of olive oil. When the onion looks soft and shiny throw the chopped nettle in and mix gently . Let it simmer for five to ten minutes and add some broth ( a ladle or two ) . Let it simmer at medium heat for another ten minutes and is ready .

You can pair it with some golden polenta or just bread and sunny side up eggs . I like it either way with some extra fresh garlic and without eggs .

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Nettle

Nettle Fotor

I first heard of Nettle as a toddler  when my Grandma used to tell us stories with enchanted Faeries weaving magical garments out of nettle’s fibers. She also used to feed us Nettle soup in Spring and rinsed our hair with a Nettle infusion .

To this day Nettle is one of my favorite companions and teachers. When the first tender leafs appear I collect some and make soup. It is the greatest thing one can do after winter.  This unassuming  plant is rich in minerals and iron.

Late spring I collect more for tea and make some tincture too. Also it makes a great tea for other plants in need . I leave handfuls of nettle in fresh water , covered for few days. It will stink but the result is an amazing picker upper for veggies and flowers alike .

As a biodynamic gardener I use various preparations of nettle for the compost or the Barrel Compost , a mixture of eggshells, cow manure , nettle and crushed basalt , which later I dilute in water and use when I transplant or for young trees , or in any place nurturing is needed.

When I first started to garden seven and a half years ago , my first thought was to invite powerful allies for healing, protection  and soul nourishment.

I grew Nettle from seeds purchased from Turtle Tree Seed . And then every fall and spring I replanted the roots around the perimeter of our back yard and in the center of my veggie garden. It took off spreading fast and healing the  clay dirt beneath.

Rheumatism , anyone? Try some fresh nettle : brush it with your hands or let your knees touch it. The formic acid contained within it is a great cure although it will give some a skin rush. 

At first i thought she could be invasive . Gently she taught me otherwise. All plants do great in her vicinity. Competition into cooperation. This is what I have learned. A Mars influenced plant acts like a true worrier but with a very compassionate heart.

And the fresh leaves make a green dye for natural fibers ,the stems harvested , softened and carded will give a beautiful , strong fiber which can be weaved into a very fine fabric or twisted in a rope.

So next time you meet some in a garden or out in the wild befriend it and honor it for its humbleness and the awesome gifts.