Pigweed recipes

How to eat pigweeds

Pigweeds recipe
Pigweeds prepared in the Catalan manner
  • First of all we must take into account that we must only eat the tender upper leaves
  • We can eat the pigweed leaves  raw or boiled or cooked, similar to spinach.
  •  If eating more than three or four leaves, such as in a soup, it is advisable to previously boil the pigweeds and discard the broth  because they are rich in oxalates.
  • Pigweeds can be eaten in different stews, vegetable soups, etc., basically in vegetable dishes and to make tortillas.
  • They can also be used to fill a fresh pasta, to prepare empanadas and for crêpes.
  • It is not convenient to eat many oxalates because they impede the absorption of calcium, and because it can cause kidney stones if there is a certain predisposition (more information).
  • These tips are only necessary if a large amount of plant is consumed, it is not necessary for 4 leaves in a salad or in an omelette. Another way to compensate oxalates is to combine with cheese.

What parts of this plant are edible?

The edible part is the most tender leaves of the plant, that is, those of the upper ends of the branches. We can consume them fresh in the salad.

What flavor does pigweed leaves have?

The taste of this plant  is similar to chard, but with a finer texture, with more turgidity and flavor.

Tips for using pigweed leaves in salads

In salads, it is better to use tender leaves, light green and tender. If we put the tender leaves previously soaking, they will be more crispy.

When used in salads, they can be combined with vegetables (tomatoes, …), with other wild herbs (sorrel, campion, boragedandelion, …), wild flower petals (rose petals), wild fruits (wild rose, blackberries, …) ,etc.

Pigweeds recipes

Catalan recipe with pigweeds

This recipe is an adaptation of a typical dish consumed in the region of Catalonia that is normally prepared with spinach, but this recipe is the same or even richer when these are replaced by pigweeds. It is a delicious dish, and a delicious way to eat vegetables:

Ingredients of the recipe
Ingredients of the recipe: pigweeds, raisins, pine nuts, garlic and onion.

Ingredients for 3 servings:

Preparation of the recipe:

  • Put a pot with water to boil.
  • Meanwhile, in a pan, sauté the garlic in olive oil so that it is impregnated with its flavor. Be careful that the garlic does not burn. If necessary, turn off the heat when the garlic begins to brown.
  • Boil the pigweeds for about 8 minutes. The water must be discarded, it can not be used for broth, since it is very rich in oxalates. Precisely pigweeds should be boiled to avoid consuming too much of this substance.
  • Toast the pine nuts with the garlic in the pan, over medium heat and stirring to avoid burning. Add the raisins
  • Finally, add the pigweeds, boiled and drained. It is recommended to cut a little with a knife so that later it is easier to distribute. Sauté the vegetables with the sauce lightly, as seen in the photo:
  • Let all the ingredients rest so that the flavors combine.

How to serve this pigweeds recipe?

  • Serve as a starter, accompaniment or main course.
Presentation of "pigweeds in Catalan manner
Presentation of “pigweeds in Catalan manner” with mallow flowers

Recipe for vegetable cake with pigweeds

This vegetable cake was one of the signature recipes of the Spices festival in Argençola celebrated in 2017. It is a recipe that spreads a lot and is ideal for those family meals in which you have to feed many diners, or to be able to prepare at home to eat for 2 days. In addition, we can use to put more than one variety of vegetables.

Vegetable pie: poached onion, pigweeds (previously boiled), egg and cheese on top

Ingredients for about 5 servings:

(The amount of rations will depend on the amount of vegetable used)

Preparation of the recipe:

  • Clean the vegetables and boil them, depending on what they are, between 8-10 minutes. Drain well.
  • Put a splash of oil in the oven tray. Place the thin sliced ​​potatoes in slices. On top, the thin slices of onion too. On the third layer, the vegetables must be  scalded and finely chopped. On top, slices of zucchini and potato, alternated.
  • Beat the eggs and throw them over all the floors. Season with salt, put aromatic herbs to taste and sprinkle grated cheese on top.
  • Bake about 45 minutes, but at first cover with baking paper so that the cheese does not burn. Let stand before serving.

Where to buy pigweed?

Pigweeds are plants that are not very appreciated on a commercial level and are not usually commercialized. The most likely way to consume this plant is to harvest it in its wild state or cultivate it in the family garden.

In case of wild harvesting, it is recommended to consult these norms for the gathering of edible wild plants.

What does pigweed provide me?

Nutritionally, what stands out most of this plant is its content in vitamin C, chlorophyll, carotene and other phytochemical compounds with health properties.

Chenopodium album, known as Pigweet,  Lamb’s quarters, Common lambsquarters, Goosefoot, in English, consists mainly of water (84%),  carbohydrates (3%),  fiber (3%),  protein (3%) and fat (less 1%).

punto rojo More information on pigweed

This article was endorsed by Elisenda Carballido - Dietitian nutritionist. Postgraduate in Phytotherapy and master in Nutrition and Metabolism.
Written by Editorial Botanical-online team in charge of content writing

16 December, 2020

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