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The Corner Chronicle
Chimacum, Washington, Wednesday April 23, 2014
Heidi’s Nettle Quiche – Wake up Those Tastebuds!
April 2nd, 2012 by katyandcracker
photomontage of Heidi serving her nettle quiche

Now’s the time to put on a pair of protective gardening gloves and go foraging for tender wild nettles (currently about 6-8 inches tall/no flowers). Take some scissors and a colander and snip only the top 4 inches off each plant. Nettles are actually quite tasty and the sting completely disappears with cooking. You can use them anyway that you would spinach. In this recipe, Heidi has decided to add them to a delicious easy quiche.

Heidi had to walk as far as her neighbor’s ravine to find her nettles – I promise, in the country they are not far away. She advises staying away from busy roads. If sliding down ravines in the rain is not your cup of tea, we also sell nettles at the store harvested by Center Valley residents, Hans Barr and his wife, Deanna, who designed the beautiful labels. I was skeptical, but the prickers on the nettle leaves, still visible with cooking, turn gelatinous and are undetectable in the mouth.

photomontage of nettles for sale and gathering nettles in the wild

Ingredients:

  • One package puff pastry defrosted in frig for 1 hr or at room temperature for 20 minutes.
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • A colander full of stinging nettles, rinsed (with rubber gloves on), any large stems removed.
  • One large onion, diced
  • 1 ¼ cup ricotta
  • 4 farm fresh eggs
  • 1 ½ c. grated cheese – we used Mt Townsend Creamery’s Trailhead
  • ¾ cup milk
  • Pepper and salt to taste
photo of chopping onions, washing nettles and cooking them both

 

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter pan (Heidi’s was 12 x 7″) and line with the puff pastry. You may roll and reshape the pastry if necessary to fit your pan.
  2. Sauté onions with garlic in olive oil, add nettles and gently fry for about 7 minutes on a low heat, stirring regularly to avoid scorching them. This removes the sting.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the ricotta with the eggs, the grated cheese and milk.
  4. Add the onion/nettle mixture, add some salt and pepper and pour the mixture in the prepared pan with puff pastry.
  5. Bake for about 40 minutes or until brown.
photomontage of assembling the quiche

 

Serving Suggestions:

Our brunch was rounded out with Pane d’Amore’s Fig Anise bread topped with Mt Townsend’s Fromage Blanc, Knudsen’s “Just Cranberry” juice, and some cappuccinos made with Seattle’s Lighthouse Coffee. Mmmmmm, mmmhh!

photomontage of Pane d'Amore fig and anise toast with Mt Townsend Creamery Fromage Blanc and cappuccino

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4 Responses

  1. [...] use nettles like you would spinach (just handle with gloves until they’re cooked!). We found this nettle quiche recipe online – leave a comment and let us know if you try it, or if you’ve ever cooked with [...]

  2. Heidi says:

    Thanks you two! I made the quiche again a couple of days ago – for dinner this time. Was yummy. Hope you enjoyed it too. – Heidi

  3. kristin says:

    Heidi, I just got home from a nettle harvest, perfect timing! I will be sharing this quiche with my family this weekend. Thanks!

  4. Gunther Dohse says:

    Heidi, I have been eating nettles since 1942. However, I have not been able to share my love for this spring green as nicely as you have. Thank you. Is a recipe for nettle soup far behind?
    Gunther

Questions or Comments?