Some plants are real tryers. I’m up to my armpits in two of them today. I’ve been boiling beetroot roots for pickling and using in recipes (have you seen lovebeetroot.co.uk?). I wish I could remember where I read that the ‘scarlet netherparts’ were overlooked by our ancestors who actually preferred the leaves. Now its the turn for the chard-like tasty leaves to be underestimated. They’re very tasty cooked like chard and are really good in quiche or as a green veg, we chopped the stems and cooked them as part of a tasty tempura last night.
My other plant hero this weekend is nasturtium. We’ve been eating bunches of nasturtium flowers with fish and in salad for some time and the peppery leaves have been making it into our sandwiches. Today, after inspiration from the River Cottage Handbook on Preserves, I’m pickling Nasturtium seed pods to create home made caper-a-likes and adding them to a nasturtium leaf pesto. The pesto is deliciously pesto-y. We’ll see how things go with the nasturtium capers!