Nature's green larder

The wild element in the kitchen

Herbs and fresh shoots are ready to be picked right now and they are make out a delicious, healthy ingredient in various dishes. Try these recipes and learn how to eat the weeds in your garden. 

Green pancakes

Different herbs like e.g. stinging nettle, goutweed, orache, chickweed and chervil.
1 cup wheat flour
2 eggs
2 cups milk
Butter for the pan   

Wash the herbs thoroughly and blanch them in boiling water. Drain the herbs and chop them roughly.

Whisk flour, milk, eggs and salt to form a smooth batter. Add the herbs.

Melt some butter on the hot pan and cook the pancakes on both sides.

Green 'frikadeller' (meat balls)

1 basket full of different, fresh herbs like e.g. stinging nettle, garlic mustard, ramsons, goutweed, dandelion leaves, chickweed, birch leaves and chervil.
2 chopped onions
3 chopped garlic cloves
2 eggs
1.5 cup wheatmeal
A little milk
Butter for the pan

When collecting your herbs, pick only new, crispy shoots. Wash and drain the herbs and then chop them finely. Mix them with onion, wheatmeal, milk, egg and season with salt. The consistency must be quite firm. Scoop a spoonful of mixture and shape it into a ball using the palm of your hand. Heat the butter in a pan and fry until the 'frikadeller' are well-browned. Serve with blanched stinging nettles in white sauce.

Blanched stinging nettles in white sauce

1 small basketful of stinging nettles or oraches
A little water
1 cup cream

Wash the herbs thoroughly and blanch them in boiling water. Drain and chop finely. In a pot mix herbs, cream and salt. Bring to the boil and season to taste. Serve immediately.

Filling soup with stinging nettles

2 cockerels
3 onions
4 parsley roots
2 parsnips
4 carrots
A little piece of celery root 
Small basketful of stinging nettles 

Cook the cockerels in plenty of water. After a short time, skim off the foamy solids that rise to the top. Continue cooking the cockerels until they are almost tender. Remove the cockerels from the soup to a plate of board. Cut the meat into bite-sized pieces and throw away the skin and the carcass.

Chop the onions. Rinse and dice the parsley roots, parsnips and celery into 1 cm pieces. Add the vegetables to the boiling soup. Wash and chop up the stinging nettles. When the vegetables are almost tender, add the meat and the stinging nettles. Season to taste. Serve with bread.

Sweet pancakes with elderflowers

Fresh elderflowers 
2.5 cup wheat flour
3-4 eggs
2 cup milk 
2 cup beer
Butter for the pan

Remove any stalks or stems as you will only need the elderflowers. Mix and whisk flour, milk, beer, eggs, salt and honey to form a smooth batter. Add the elderflowers.

Melt some butter on a hot pan and cook the pancakes on both sides. Serve hot.

Herb dumplings 

1 cup millet flour or barley flour
1 cup wheat flour
2 eggs
1 egg white

1 big basketful of fresh herbs like nettles, goutweed, orache etc.
Viking cheese (feta-like)
A handful of chopped nuts
2 egg yolks
1 finely chopped onion
2 finely chopped garlic cloves
A little bit of lard
A little flour
0.5 cup milk
1 egg white

Wash the herbs and blanch them in boiling water. Drain the herbs and chop them finely. Mix herbs, cheese and nuts. Add 2 egg yolks, 1 egg white and salt.

In a frying pan cook the chopped onion in some lard until soft. Add milk and stir in the flour. Now add the onion-mixture to the herb-mixture and mix.

For the dough mix all the ingredients except the one egg white. Form the dough into balls and then roll out each ball into a round of approx. 8 cm diameter. Place a teaspoonful of mixture in the middle of each round. Brush the edges with egg white and fold the dough around the filling to form small parcels.

To cook the dumplings, bring a pot of water and salt to the boil. Add the dumplings. They are done when they begin to float to the top. With a spoon remove the dumplings to drain.

1 cup = 150 ml approx.

Ribe VikingeCenter's 2012 project 'Nordic food is Viking food' is supported by Region Syddanmark.