In the warmer months of the year, I tend to eat lots of raw vegetables. Just sort of snacking throughout the day, dipping fat slices of kohlrabi or radishes into various dips and spreads that I keep stoked in the fridge. Eating a seasonally based diet often means eating lots of the same ingredient for weeks and sometimes months on end. So, having an array of condiments provides us with lots of different flavors to pair with those consistently used ingredients.
The abundance of greens in the garden make the perfect base for different variations on pesto, chimichurri, and as the recipe below, chutneys. While most gardeners or farmers pull the weeds, making room for better known leafy greens like spinach, chard, and kale, I like to allow some wild greens to take off and do their thing. We have a good exchange :)
Lamb's quarter (Chenopodium album) is a vigorous annual that greets our land each and every year. It is often compared to spinach and can be consumed raw or cooked and prepared similarly. The younger plants are soft and tender, making them perfect for raw preparations in salads or ferments like my wild food kimchi that I love to make in the spring. As it grows taller, it naturally lends itself to the sauté pan and cooked up with fresh garlic scapes and butter for a delicious green side dish.
This recipe is a mash up of flavors that after sitting in the fridge for a day, really takes on some nice flavors. I love the combo of sweet raisins with salty capers, and the toasted pumpkin seeds add a nice earthy touch.
You can serve this with anything from roasted fish to grilled portobellos. With half of the batch, I stirred it into some freshly made kefir cheese and used up the rest as a dip on fresh veggies.
Lamb's Quarter-Raisin Chutney
- 2 cups picked and washed lamb's quarter leaves
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1-2 garlic scapes, roughly chopped (or 2 garlic cloves)
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 2-4 anchovies
- 1/2 + 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- sea salt to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper
- First, place the pumpkin seeds into a heavy bottom pan and cook until the pumpkin brown and start to pop. Be sure to shake the pan to avoid burning then place the seeds on a tray to cool.
- Once cooled down, place into a food processor. Pulse to break up then add the remaining ingredients and blend until well pureed. Scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula then run the machine again and slowly pour in the oil and vinegar.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings. Let it chillax for 30 minutes or so to meld the flavors then serve. Store refrigerated, use within 4-5 days.