stir fried noodles
with weeds and seeds
One several possible
variations of this recipe are staples of my diet, and this
is an excellent way to get your daily dose of wild foods.
Even significantly simplified versions of this recipe are
great, and please feel encouraged to substitute the
ingredients as taste and practicality indicate.
Here's what you'll need...
One half to one third package of Eden
brand Extra Fine Pasta, Pesto Ribbons, or any other
variety that floats your boat. Egg Noodles of any
kind, really, will work.
1 large or 2 medium carrots (wild
carrots will work fine, but I do miss the nice orange
color in the finished dish...)
a Burdock root... these can vary widely
in size... you want about an equal to slightly smaller
quantity in proportion to the carrots.
1-3 Jerusalem Artichokes (or "sunchokes")
1 Shallot clove (or section, or segment
or whatever you call it...)
1-2 Garlic cloves
Fresh Dandelion greens
Fresh Ox Eye Daisy leaves and/or
Fresh Lamb's Quarters
(please remember you can substitute
whatever other fresh edible greens you have available)
Ground Flax seed
Some Balsamic Vinegar
Butter or Oil (butter really does taste
Parmesan cheese (personally, I prefer
shredded to grated)
A skillet (or wok) & a stove (or
Start by cutting your Carrots, Burdock,
Jerusalem Artichokes into slivers, slices, discs,
matchsticks, or whatever shapes turn you on. Then
mince up the garlic and shallots and set aside.
Gather your Basil & wild greens and cut
them up. You may have noticed I didn't specify
quantities; this is because I never measure. Saying
"Liberal Quantities" would be my guide to you. I'm
well aware that Dandelions are kind of bitter, and know
how to eyeball them to my taste. If you still have
trepidations about adding too much bitterness, taste your
Dandelions, and add them in smaller bunches as you make
the dish. I do use them right through fall myself,
and never recommend the old, "Boil them and throw out the
water" method... that'd really kill em. When
all cut up, set the greens aside (if you've gathered fresh
Stinging Nettle, keep this seperate).
Boil your noodles, and be sure not to
overcook (they'll stick together and won't stir fry as
well). When done, rinse and set aside.
Heat your skillet or wok, then add a
couple tablespoons of oil or 3 or 4 tablespoons of butter.
When melted, throw in your root vegetables and stir fry
them around till they get a bit tender. If you
gathered fresh Nettles, add them now.
After your roots seem to be getting
tender, and perhaps your Nettles are starting to looked
cooked enough not to sting you, add the noodles.
Stir around to mix the roots and noodles, and keep
stirring as needed to avoid burning the bottom of the
noodles to the pan. Add garlic powder to taste (I
usually do 2 or 3 good dustings). If your using
dried Parsley, add it now as well (to taste). GENTLY
sprinkle some balsamic vinegar over the noodles, but don't
overdo it... you can always add more, but you can't undo a
Keep stirring, and taste the noodles
every so often. Some people like to cook them long
enough till they dry out a bit, some people like them
wetter... it's up to you. When they taste good, add
the liberal helping of fresh greens, and liberal
quantities of ground flax and sesame seeds. Stir
around till well mixed, but don't let the greens wilt to
much in the heat.
Scoop out onto plates or into bowls and
garnish with more seeds and liberal helpings of parmesan
cheese, and devour at will.
This dish becomes absolutely divine if
prepared with fresh Hen of the Woods (Grifola frondosa)
mushrooms. You can also add shiitakes or portabellas
or morels or whatever fungus you like best... just
add them after the roots and before the noodles.
This is also an excellent accompaniment to venison,
marinated in Worchester sauce and red wine, with maybe a
bit of this sauce thrown in along with the vinegar.
For a drink to enhance your meal, red
or white wine will both work, depending on what your
serving it with, but I really enjoy it best with a good
hard cider. Woodchuck is pretty good, but sweet.
Strongbow or Blackthorn are very tasty imported dry
ciders, and worth having, if you can find 'em...