Festival Of Food – Nutritious Nettle Soup

Welcome to the Festival of Food Carnival. In celebration of the New Year and Healthy Starts, we’re sharing recipe ideas for healthy, nourishing recipes or anything you would enjoy this time of year. Hosted by Diary of a First Child and Hybrid Rasta Mama, you’re welcome to join us next time, or if you have a previously published recipe you’d like to share, add it to the linky below.

It wont be long now till we start seeing subtle signs of spring all around us, and when that time comes, so will the brand new crop of Nettles. Yes, Stinging Nettles. They grow in abundance all around us, and are regarded as a weed, but nettles, apart from being very tasty when prepared the right way, offer a wealth of nutrition and are a super food to get you through the winter to spring season changes.

Nettles are a rich green colour, revealing their extremely high iron and chlorophyll content. It is also very high in the minerals calcium, magnesium, silicon, sulphur,

copper, chromium, zinc, cobalt, potassium and phosphorus. Nettles also contain high amounts of vitamins A, C, D, E, and K as well as riboflavin and thiamine.

Nettle soup can be your best friend in the final trimester of pregnancy as you prepare your body for birth, and need to bulk up on blood-clotting vitamin K, which also then transfers to your baby through your breastmilk.

This recipe is my favourite for Nettle Soup, so as the seasons start to change, soon, dress warmly, and take a walk with a grocery bag, a thick pair of gloves and some scissors, and pick your dinner.


Nutritious Nettle Soup

Recipe Type: Foraged, Nutrition Supplement
Author: Luschka
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
Total time: 30 mins
Serves: 3-4
  • Nettles, about half a grocery bag full
  • 4 medium sized potatoes
  • 1 onion
  • Water, to cover
  • Tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Cream, to taste
  1. Heat the olive oil.
  2. Add the onion, garlic, potatoes and ginger, and fry gently till the onion is translucent and the potatoes are slightly crispy.
  3. Using gloves if you’re touching the raw nettles, add the nettles to the pot and cover with water.
  4. Cook until the potatoes are softened, then blitz the mixture in a food processor or blender.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste, and dish up.
  6. Swirl a small amount of cream into the soup to thicken it a little, and serve with fresh buttered bread for a real treat.



Please take a moment to visit the blogs of our other Festival of Food participants. The links in this list will be live by the end of the day, as participants are all in different time zones.

Stay connected! Be sure to “Like” the Festival of Food Carnival Facebook page.

Foraging For Food: Crystalized Lavender

We moved into a new house this week, and when I say it’s been mayhem and madness, I’m not joking. I’ve spent five days unpacking boxes, and it feels like I’ve barely made a dent. I’m sure it’ll all come together in one smooth motion but till then, I’ve had little to no time for foraging.

I have put a little time into the garden, however, and put down seed for the grass to regenerate in the bald patches, as well as transplanted some of the herbs from the kitchen. It is trial and error at the moment, and while the courgette plants (zucchini) are doing well in their new home, and the salad is coming on nicely too, the basil has taken it all quite badly and currently looks a little forlorn. I might need to start again on that, and perhaps keep it indoors.
Read more: Foraging For Food: Crystalized Lavender

Foraging For Food – Ramson (Wild Garlic) Scones

While savoury scones aren’t very common in England, they are among my favourite ‘snacks’.  These are actually meant to be popped in the oven with a medley of chopped vegetables, but are equally good on their own, with a little butter.

Preheat the oven to 200C.

Place the flour, salt, cayenne, butter and three quarters of the cheese in a food processor and whiz until well blended.

Beat together the egg and 2 tablespoons of the milk then add to the food processor.

Pulse to form a smooth, soft dough. Chop up the Ramson leaves and mix them in.

Form into six balls, and place on a tray in the oven for 20 mins.

Out the oven, slice, butter, and enjoy!

Foraging for Food – Yarrow Omelettes And Tea

Yarrow, or what the Ancients called Achillea after Achilles, the legendary warrior.  In battle, Yarrow was used to speed up the blood clotting and to stop haemorrhaging. Crushed, the leaves can be put directly onto cuts, and used for nose bleeds and earache, and even chewed for toothache.
Read more: Foraging for Food – Yarrow Omelettes And Tea

Foraging For Food – Nettle Soup

Nettles are a painful annoyance when you’re out and about in fields and forests, and make picking  other plants quite tough, but did you know  that in and of themselves, they are something of a super-food?

Nettles can be used to increase breast milk supply, eliminate dandruff, and is believed to have anti-anaemic, anti-diabetic, haemostatic and diuretic properties. Nettles lower glycemic levels by lowering blood sugar, so are good for diabetics, and are mildly diuretic, so help the spleen too.* Nettles apparently have the highest iron count of any edible plant.
Read more: Foraging For Food – Nettle Soup

Foraging For Food – Ramson (Wild Garlic) Omelettes

I’m still on the Ramsons this week – there are just so many of them, and so much you can do with them, it seems silly to keep them to one week.  Check last week’s post to find out more about where you can find Ramsons and poisonous lookalikes (which don’t smell like garlic at all).

Here’s a simple little recipe to try with your Ramsons and a few bits and pieces from the fridge.

I love Eggs. They are the best thing for turning a bunch of leftovers into a dinner.

For this Omelette you’ll need as much of each ingredient as you think each person would eat:

  • Mushrooms
  • Onion
  • Ramsons
  • Eggs, 2 per person
  • Salt and Pepper to season
  • Cheese to taste
  • Tomato and any other vegetables (optional)

Chop the mushrooms and onion roughly and fry until tender.

Add the chopped Ramsons and cook for another minute or two, till they are wilted.

Meanwhile, whisk the eggs till they are frothy. Lower the heat a little and pour directly into the pan. This will make the omelette light and fluffy.

Add a little grated cheese and salt and pepper, and cover with a lid until the egg is cooked on top.

Cut into as many pieces as you need and transfer carefully on to plates.

Add a couple of Ramson flowers for decoration and enjoy with toast.

  • The Ramson leaves can also be prepared as you would spinach. The garlic flavour is a lot milder in the spring than the smell of garlic would suggest.
  • Try adding Ramson leaves or flowers to savoury muffins or scones, or you could make Ramson gnocchi.

Always remember the rules of foraging for food.

Foraging for Food – Ramson (Wild Garlic) And Ricotta Gnocchi

Wild garlic is simply delicious stuff. In the spring it has a much milder taste than late in the summer, and unlike it’s commercial counterpart, you eat the leaves and the flowers, not the bulb (although you could).
Read more: Foraging for Food – Ramson (Wild Garlic) And Ricotta Gnocchi

Foraging For Food – Dandelion Pesto And Dandelion Jam

Foraging for Dandelions is probably the best place to start for a variety of reasons:

  • They are easy to identify and have no poisonous parts or poisonous lookalikes
  • They are plentiful
  • There are loads of different recipes you can use them in

I have two recipes for you today – one really easy and one just as easy but a little more time consuming.
Read more: Foraging For Food – Dandelion Pesto And Dandelion Jam

Everything Salad

Everything salad can also be everything pasta. It is a quick and easy way of clearing out all those left over bits in the fridge and the vegetable bowl, while making a great, nutritious and filling meal.

The key to a good ‘Everything Salad’ is colour and variety. An easy guide is to use the primary and secondary colours, and the five food groups:

Red, yellow and blue white and green and the grains, fruit and vegetables, dairy/proteins, meat and sugar/fats/oils. (You can use as many or as few of these as you wish)
Read more: Everything Salad