Time to grasp the Nettles – and make soup out of them

Nettle Soup  is really one of the great joys of late Spring.  Nettles are free, have as much iron as spinach and are packed full of antihistamines which makes them excellent prophylactic medicine for the hayfever sufferer.  It freezes well and looks and tastes divine.  Steamed nettles can also be eaten on their own as a vegetable and, if passed through a flame to destroy the stinging hairs, can be eaten raw if one is practising survival techniques.

Nettle Soup

I’m sure I don’t need to tell you to wear rubber or gardening gloves to pick nettles and it’s best to use the young fresh stalks or the bright green tops.

I shall have to put the photo on tomorrow as I have temporarily mislaid my camera on which the photograph of last night’s supper waits purposefully for it’s inevitable upload.

1 large pan
1 x chopping board
1 x stick blender

2oz / 60g butter
1 large onion – chopped finely
1 large carrot – chopped finely
1 large garlic clove – chopped finely
2 pints / 1l chicken stock
½ carrier bag nettles (remove tough stalks)
3 tablespoons cooked rice (to thicken it)
1 pinch nutmeg
Salt & pepper to taste
2 tablespoons thick cream
Bit of extra cream for garnishy swirlyness
Chopped parsley to garnish (if you wish)

Melt butter in a large pan
Sweat the onion, carrot and garlic until soft but not brown
Add the stock and pile in the nettles
Bring to the boil and then simmer for 5-10 minutes until the nettles are tender
Add the rice and seasoning, then purée with the stick blender
Stir in the cream
Garnish with a swirl of cream and chopped parsley
Serve with tasty, seedy bread



Filed under Food, Hedgerows, Nutrition & Sensible Eating, Recipes, Seasonal

16 responses to “Time to grasp the Nettles – and make soup out of them

  1. Oh no…Vinomaker whacked down all of our nettles (and we had an over abundance of them) the past two days. I would have had a go at this. May be they are not the same nettles though. Probably would pair well with a nice Viognier!

    • E J Moore

      Just made this nettle soup for lunch – easy, tasty, striking dark green colour, very nice, thank you. I ate three bowls of it, it was so good; hope there won’t be any ill effects.

      • wartimehousewife

        Your poo will turn green I’m afraid EJ.
        And you will be able to lift ten ton weights without difficulty.

      • E J Moore

        Yes, it’s the next day and I’m still alive, and strangely revitalised.

  2. LucyLou

    My favourite soup – thank you for introducing it to me!

  3. I can personally highly recommend WH’s Nettle Soup. It would be very high on the list of essentials for an Unmitigated England Cook Book.

  4. Sue

    Nettle soup has long been on my list of things to try. Really must get round to it.

  5. wartimehousewife

    Vinogirl: ordinary stinging nettles are just fine and I bet you’ll find some lurking somewhere. In fact, unless he’s dug them up, they’ll be back soon anyway and be young and tender. And thank you for the wine advice – I do take notice you know!

    Peter: Now there’s an idea – I shall e-mail you separately.

    Sue: Try it now – you’ll absolutely love it and a bit of home-made bread. Yum.

  6. I seem to have acres of the bloody things and with a soon to be one year old tottering about the gardens they are a constant worry…do you want a ton or two?

  7. My mother used to use nettles as a rinse for hair after washing.

  8. Pingback: Six of the Best 54

  9. Pingback: Pudding club: foraging for food at Niles’s Blog

  10. Pingback: Nettles – the free alternative to Spinach | Wartime Housewife

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