The goodness from Nettles
Spring has properly sprung! This time of year is so exciting and full of delight after the long, dark, slow, winter months. It is a joy to be feeling the sun on our skin and to be out exploring the new life of this season once again. As the cycles of the year spin, we get to rediscover the herbs each spring as they shoot up their lush green leaves. Nettle soup is a familiar friend that harnesses the potency of this vibrant spring energy.
The stinging nettle, full of blood-nourishing iron, protein and many other minerals is an abundant super food, free for all on our doorsteps. It is so virulent in its tenacity for life, that local councils nationwide spend money on nasty poisons to eradicate it from our parks and community spaces.
This plant has associations with the planet Mars, having hot, direct, pioneering, combative and stimulating qualities to its nature. Think of nettle growing in organized troops of armed warriors.
Eating nettle soup at this time of the year has many benefits such as supporting a good cleanse of the body from winter excess. This was very important to the good health of our ancestors. During winters of the past, without the modern convenience of ‘the supermarket’, greens and most fresh veg were in short supply. Vegetables were eaten in the form of preserves; chutneys, jams, vinegars, etc. They were key to surviving the sparse, cold winter when little grows. You can imagine then why there would be such celebration of greens in the spring. Rejuvenating and re-enlivening, a time to truly cleanse and replenish the body with vitamins and minerals – a deep spring clean.
Nettle Soup Recipe
First, you will need to go out and harvest some vibrant nettle tips. We mean the new growth, the first 4-6 leaves. Wearing gloves is a good idea. For the super brave of you, the nettle sting, through their hypodermic syringes initiates a hormonal reaction, a cascade of mind and body-altering neuro-peptides one of which is serotonin. The stings can literally send you off on a bit of a trip!
Heat a little knob of organic butter in a pan.
Fry off 2 large chopped onions and a couple cloves of garlic.
Add 2 potatoes chopped in squares.
Season with salt and pepper.
Add one litre of vegetable stock.
Bring to the boil and simmer until the potatoes are soft.
Add a generous handful of nettle tips and simmer for a couple more minutes.
Take off the heat and blend until smooth.