I live in the produce capital of the world. Not to brag, but California honestly supplies this nation with 99 percent of artichokes, 99 percent of walnuts, 97 percent of kiwis, 97 percent of plums, 95 percent of celery, 95 percent of garlic, 89 percent of cauliflower, 71 percent of spinach, 69 percent of carrots… the list is almost as endless as the fields out here. Despite its reputation for green-haired skateboarders and suntanned surfers, California is really teeming with farmers.
So you wouldn’t think we’d resort to eating weeds.
But you’d be wrong. At the famous Ferry Building Farmer’s Market in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago, I ran across a crate of Purslane for sale. Hey, isn’t this the same stuff I pull out of the stone path in my back yard?
Yep. Not only that, but this booth was also selling dandelion leaves, another tangy addition to many a salad.
Just to whet your appetite, they were also selling Dragon Tongue Beans
and Chioggia beets, which are pink and white striped, extremely cool:
But back to the weeds. Did you know you can safely eat more than a dozen irritating invaders? Among them are lamb’s quarters, kudzu, clover, elderflowers, watercress, garlic grass, sorrel, and chickweed. And many of them claim amazing health benefits. Best of all: they grow like weeds! So if you’ve never had much luck gardening, these will thrive for you.
I just have one question: Does this make me a weed-eater?