I have been tempted to taste some nettle dish for a long time. Perhaps that is why I was very interested in this recipe in the book Cooking through the Power of Nature by Christine Saahs, which I have already mentioned in the article with her recipe for herb butter. It is the best cookbook in the world in the category Nature as Medicine in 2020 (Gourmand World Cookbook Awards).
Christine and her husband have run the oldest winery (almost 2,000 years) in Austria since 1971 and, in addition, are one of the first in Europe to operate on the principles of biodynamic farming. You can read about what it means and about what you can see as well as taste in this winery in my article: Nikolaihof Wachau
As can be seen from the cover of the award-winning book, Christine uses many plants – either as part of dishes or at least for decoration. Beautifully arranged food opens all the senses and warms the soul. The nettle salad looked just as great in the book as on the plate.
Not only tea and hair shampoos are made from nettle, but it is also used in the kitchen, it has detoxifying effects, supports a healthy heart and helps in the treatment of rheumatism. The most suitable are young leaves of nettle, which have not yet bloomed. In this recipe, I was also interested in the fact that part of the leaves is roasted, the nettle is then crunchy and gives the salad a special taste.
2 handfuls of young nettle leaves (per 1 portion)
1 small iceberg lettuce
various herbs (sorrel, young dandelion, daisies, dead nettle…)
3 tablespoons olive oil
phlox or nasturtium flowers, sesame and walnuts to garnish
For the marinade:
1/8 l of cream
1 tablespoon raspberry vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh or frozen raspberries
Wash the nettle and lettuce leaves and herbs and spin them dry. Prepare the marinade – mix all of the ingredients and push through a sieve. Chop the herbs and half of the nettle. Heat the oil in a pan, add the remaining nettle leaves, fry them until crispy. Remove them with a slotted spoon, drain on a kitchen paper towel and immediately lightly salt them. Set aside. Pour the marinade over the chopped leaves and herbs so that they are completely covered. Carefully mix the roasted nettle and garnish with flowers, sesame and walnuts before serving.
The book was published in German and English by Brandstätter in Vienna and can be ordered at: https://www.dienikolai.at/produkte/hofladen/mitbringsl.html?hofladen=15 or: https://www.brandstaetterverlag.com/buch/cooking-power-nature
Thanks to Christine Saahs for providing me with the recipe and photos from the mentioned book.
Text: © Copyright Ingrid, Travelpotpourri
Fotos: © Copyright Ingrid, Travelpotpourri
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