Rainy day foraged salad

Rainy Day Foraged Salad

My real intent, in foraging this particular salad, was to find and enjoy some young curly dock.

Dock is a common name used for two very different plants. Burdock (Arctium) is not a true dock. It’s an enormous, wide-leaved plant that eventually sends up bloom heads with big burrs on them. Some people dig and eat the root of burdock. I was looking for Rumex, not Arctium. In the photo below you can see some of the big burdock plants in the foreground, and just behind those are a dozen or so of the Rumex, or curly dock plants, with new seedheads just up. The next photo is of a few more isolated dock plants.

Burdock (foreground) and Dock
Burdock (foreground) and Dock (behind, with seedheads all spiked up)
Curly dock
Curly dock (with holes in leaves)

I didn’t harvest from any of the docks that had seedheads; I’m saving those to make a flour with this winter. I was only harvesting the newest leaves off of younger docks. A few I found juuuuust unrolling, and those are the best ones. They are a little bit slimy at the stem, when you get them that new. They have a lemony, and sometimes a slightly bitter taste (if they are older leaves).

Dock (rumex) leaves
Dock (rumex) leaves

By the time I had enough greens for my two salads, I had seven different plants (and a few flowers). Beezus watched me work, and didn’t help.

Bee supervising
Bee supervising

In the photo below are all my cleaned greens. Clockwise from the top, I found chickweed, dandelion, dock, daylily, branch lettuce, violets, and watercress.

Rainy day foraged salad
Rainy day foraged salad

2 comments on “Rainy Day Foraged Salad

  1. Morgan Siem

    Beautiful! I love curly dock, especially sautéed. The lemony flavor adds so much. You said you save the seeds to make flour? Mind sharing more about that? I have tons of curly dock at my house that has gone to seed.

    • Lisa Creech Bledsoe

      Wait until it’s good and dry and brown, then harvest the seed heads. Strip out stems, and grind it all in a food processor. That’s it! Don’t try to separate the seeds from the chaff; just call it extra fiber.

      I’m not a big fan of microwave bread, but I may try this recipe (can’t remember where I found it online):

      1/2 cup dock seeds (~1/8 cup ground)
      1 tsp sugar
      1/4 tsp baking soda
      1 egg
      Optional spices: vanilla extract, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, etc.

      This recipe makes single serving of bread (~4 oz), or if you add more sugar, a cake.

      Grind seeds in food processor. Mix all of the ingredients together into a microwavable mug. Stir well and microwave for 60-80 seconds at full power. Make sure to pay attention to your bread as it may swell above the rim of the cup. I just stop and start the microwave as needed until the bread feels cooked enough.

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