With the botanical name of ‘Myosoton aquaticum’ it becomes clear that there is more than meets the eye when acquainting oneself with the perennial weed known as ‘Chickweed’.
These triumphant little wonders that grow in nitrogen rich soil pack a powerful punch of medicine. Chickweed is consumed for stomach and bowel problems, blood disorders, asthma, lung diseases, obesity, vitamin C deficiency (scurvy) and skin conditions such as psoriasis, rabies, itching, muscle and joint pain!
Nestled among flocks of clover and dandelion allies there is great joy to be discovered upon first glance. Pristine symmetry of ten white fronds and with a closer look, noticing there are in fact five immaculate heart shaped petals split down the gentle center of her alluring, aromatic excellence.
Building a relationship with this plant has been a joyful adventure and thankfully they grow wildly upon mountain tops, valleys and most lawns in the Pemberton Valley in every season sans snow. Chickweed is often overlooked as a weed, pulled up and out of the dirt without a chance to spread her delicate wings of love upon your dinner plates full of nourishing kindness and fresh flavor infusion. If you haven’t already I urge you to open your heart to this angelic wild edible and invite her into you culinary explorations!
When wild harvesting as always only take what you need, in this case a pair of scissors, the top six inches of the plant and no more than 10% of the crop you see present. You can add her to fresh spring salads, summery mocktails and even fall soups and garnishes. My personal favorite way to integrate this wild beauty is my vegan, ‘Chic’week Pesto’. I add this into an ice cube tray and set it in the freezer for a heal(thy) does of delicious nourishment. It is especially useful on evenings when making dinner seems an unattainable feat! Many studies suggest integrating phytonutriens (an abundance of which are found in the complex immune systems of wild edible plants) into our daily diet will decrease disease, bringing us closer to our ancestors diet of grazing on a variety of nutrient dense wilderness edibles.
Without further ado, here is the recipe!
Chic’Weed Pesto Recipe:
3 cups of Chickweed washed and drained
1/4 cup of Nutritional Yeast
1 cup raw nuts (cashews, pines, hazelnut, walnuts – pick your fave or mix)
2-3 Raw garlic cloves
1 tsp pink salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Chop in a food processor until smooth, add to an ice cube tray and voila! Phytonutrient dense deliciousness at your fingertips!
I can’t wait to see how you explore this wonderful plant!
Until then you can find me on Instagram @theplayfulmooon making all vegan recipes to share with you through my recipe hashtag #eatrealrainbows🌈