Monday, August 1, 2011

Eating Weeds and Loving It!?

I blame it all on Kalyn Denny @ Kalyn's Kitchen. She posted this beautiful and delicious Mediterranean Lettuce Salad with purslane in it. I read purslane and thought, Where have I heard of that before? Kalyn went on to say it was the healthiest food in the world... really? Turns out its rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, a fat we need to survive. Reading more I realized I heard of this plant in reference to gardening. It's one of many pesky weeds that tend to invade our gardens and landscape. Seems to grow everywhere uninvited.

I was getting ready for my morning run so I thought I'd keep an eye out for purslane. I hadn't gone a block from my house when I found it growing in the sidewalk cracks... there it was in the bark area of a neighbors yard... and, look at that, it grew around the metal posts that blocked cars from entering the trail where I run each morning with Brandy. Even though everything in the green belt along the trail has dried out, the purslane looked healthy and growing.

Finishing my run, I grabbed a clean doggie poop bag (ewwwww... I know) from the convenient dispenser at the trail head and gathered bunches of purslane for my afternoon smoothie.

I snipped the roots from the stalks and washed the weed... eh, plant and patted it dry. Then I went out to my teeny, tiny side yard (the only location that gets good sun) where I have a pot sitting in a larger pot growing some chard. I cut the larger leaves for my smoothie.

To make my smoothie, I added a frozen banana and 1/2 cup of filtered cold water to my Vita-Mix pitcher. Added about six medium-size leaves of red chard I had purchased at the farmer's market on Sunday, my harvested chard, and the gathered and cleaned purslane.

I usually add 1/4 cup of unsweetened coconut flakes, but after a quick taste of the blended drink, decided it was perfect without it. Poured it into a glass and... yummmy. Who would have thought—eating weeds and loving it?

Purslane Green Smoothie

From Chris Pedersen

Category Drink
Cuisine Healthy, Vegan

1/2 C cold filtered water, Reverse Osmosis is best
1 frozen or fresh ripe banana
10 medium-size chard leaves
Handful of purslane
1-2 ice cubes (optional)

1. Add water, banana and chard to Vtia-Mix or bender.
2. Blend on High until smooth.
3. Add purslane and blend until smooth.
4. Add ice cubes to make colder, if necessary
5. Serve

What unusual food have you eaten that you found tasty? Scroll down and leave a comment.


  1. I'm so glad I'm inspiring you to eat your weeds! It's pretty prolific around here, that's for sure!

  2. Some would think I'm a bit crazy. But a very healthy crazy! Thanks for the free food tip, Kalyn.

  3. I never thought weeds were good for anything. Thank you for the pics and recipes.

  4. If only star thisle were a health food!!! I'd have my own booth at the farmers market! Speaking of which, there is a booth at the Sunday market in El Dorado Hills that looks like it is run by young Greatful Dead fans that has a lettuce mix that Tom loves. It has "unusual greens" in it that he says are bursting with flavor. Keep an eye out for it next week! Also, Z&B Ranch is the organic ranch run by a young man from our church. Really really nice guy trying to make a go of it. I just love the market!

    Jennie Z

  5. Jennie, That would be the sweet young farmers Will and Kellan with Will's dad. They are the first stop I make at the Towne Center Farmer's Market. I buy a bag of their delicious greens every week. Seems you and I are on the same page!