Kind of ironic, me trying to eat thistles and nettles, as they were definitely the most annoying plants to me when I was a kid. Thistles scratch you real badly and nettles sting like hell, I think they are even worse, coz the sting can last for quite a long time and, if you are not familiar with them, it itches and burns at the same time!
I watched this video the other week and the guy makes eating thistles sound really delicious, so I thought I’ll try them. And basically everyone knows how a thistle looks like, I thought that would be an easy start into my wild food experiment..
Well, I don’t know if Australian Thistles are different to other kinds, but the ones we tried tasted awful! We looked for the smallest ones, but even they had flowered already and might have been too old. And we really tried the smallest ones we could find!
They were just really dry and that white, dry stuff in the middle was just really nasty. It was like chewing on a twig. And I felt a bit dizzy after, but that might have been from the heat. I will try eating them again in Europe, but I don’t think I’ll have to eat them for a while.
Also, standing in a park, with gloves on, my partners gloves were black, mine were white, and with knives, doing something that was a little weird, well, I felt like we looked like serial killers..
I haven’t seen any stinging nettles in Australia, so I haven’t actually tried them yet. But I remember seeing by lots and lots of them in Germany. ..and getting stung by them.
My grandmother told me that during World War II they used to go to the forest to pick nettles to make nettle soup from. As a kid I was like “Wtf, how rough is that??” Now I’m like, yeah, let’s give it a try. I wonder what my grandmother would think if I told her I ate nettle soup. She’d probably tell me I’m crazy and ask me why I wouldn’t buy my greens in the supermarket! I haven’t actually tried eating fresh stinging nettles, I used to drink nettle tea, but don’t even really like it, it’s too weak and grassy tasting for me..
So yeah, that hasn’t been very successful, but I am not giving up yet..
Have you eaten nettles or thistles or any other crazy wild food before? What is your favourite herbal tea and why?(mine is peppermint at the moment, it’s so refreshing) Do you think eating wild foods is a good idea or is it too much effort?