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Old 07-20-2012, 11:05 AM   #1
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Default Lambs quarters

Does anyone eat lambs quarters? I discovered that what I had always thought was ragweed was actually a type of wild spinach that wwas highly nutritions and carefree, if not perniciously weedy. Since I've lived in this house (twenty-two years) I have always pulled the "ragweed" out with alacrity, fearing the allergies that I was convinced came from this plant. Last week, while watching a you tube video, I saw that the video illustrated a "superfood" called lambs quarters, and I realized the error of my ways...

Since then, I've been juicing it, eating out of hand, and fostering it in my veggie garden. Actually, there was one spot in the garden where the cardboard I had laid down was either moved, or I had failed to cover with cardboard there. Sure enough, lambs quarters came up, and I was planning on pulling it and would have, had I not seen that video.

Here is one description of the plant:

"Chenopodium album, also called white goosefoot, pigweed, and in Britain, fat-hen, is in the Chenopodiaceae or goosefoot family, making it related to quinoa, beets and spinach. Like its cousin quinoa, it’s sort of a super-food — high in Vitamins A and C, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, manganese, potassium and iron."

Urban Forager: Sheepish About Lambsquarters - The Local – Fort-Greene Blog - NYTimes.com

Here is the complete nutritional breakdown:

http://wildblessings.com/plants/lambs-quarter/

Anyone have eating lambs quarters stories??
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:31 AM   #2
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Oh yes jack, lamb's quarters was one of the first "wild" foods I ate as a teenager. They were plentiful, nutritious, and tasty, citrus flavored in a way. Now pigweed is another thing altogether in my experience. That is nasty and bitter unlike the sweet tasty lamb's quarters. You can cook them to get rid of some of the bitterness but I find them distasteful. It's for the individual to decide.

I also used to harvest purslane, a succulent great for salads that is a typical garden weed, it's juicy and I love that it can go into the salad bowl instead of the compost.

Also the roots of pickerel weed are great tossed in salads if you have access to a pond or other wetland where they grow. I make sure not to take too much though, they used to be scarce but I think they are on the rise again.

Add a few violets, squash, or nasturtium blossoms to your salad and invite your friends over!
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Old 07-20-2012, 01:02 PM   #3
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I used to harvest it for cooked greens, but if left to go to seed it is incredibly weedy. Mature plants take up a lot of space and the main and branch stems are too woody for the compost. I finally opted to go without and save myself all the weeding.
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Old 07-20-2012, 03:07 PM   #4
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Thanks, Linrose and Ben. Are you guys still eating it regularly??? Do you let it grow in your garden? I just weeded my veggie garden this afternoon and found a few baby lambs quarters and one baby purslane. I let them be.
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Old 07-20-2012, 03:10 PM   #5
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Oh most definitely! MY FAVORITE! Tastes just like asparagus....I pull them when I find them in the floral beds and eat just the growing tips. Another, wonder what the neighbors think of me moment kind of thing...
Purslane......I dislike its slipperiness!
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Old 07-20-2012, 03:13 PM   #6
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It's funny but I find very little lamb's quarters here in the south where it was so prevalent in the northeast. I think I only found one plant here this spring.
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Old 07-22-2012, 08:27 AM   #7
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Between linrose's description of sweet and citrusy and havalotta's comparing it to asparagus, you all make me want to try it. Unfortunately, I'll have to learn to recognize it first...when I opened the thread I was picturing sorrel for some reason. I remember my dad saying it is edible...not sure how I began to associate that plant with the name lamb's quarters.

Ok, after doing an image search to be sure meant sorrel, I figured out the(mis)association: the plant I was thinking of is called sheep sorrel Rumex acetosella.
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Last edited by dapjwy; 07-22-2012 at 08:28 AM. Reason: Clarity
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