Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Pucker up, and enjoy.

Mother nature never ceases to amaze me for just as lemons and limes have become petite and juice challenged I get a readymade, natural substitute. Moving forward I have my go-to citrus note – be it pureed into a pesto; torn into a dish along with ubiquitous salt and pepper, or tossed along with a melody other tender leaves to complete that season to taste commandment sorrel draws my full attention.

Twice, now, I have found French sorrel in the market, which definitely indicates the start of a spring harvest, and admittedly it is one of my absolute favorite greens. It takes turns being used as an herb, leafy green or addition to my salad mix while I can get my greedy hands on it – which fortunately is into early autumn. It looks like a spinach but claims the buckwheat family as its lineage, with none of the nutty quality I affix to its grain-centric ancestor. There is a strong citrus-like note that makes you whip your head around looking for the gremlin that squeezed lemon juice into your dish. But don’t do it, and for that matter, don’t heat sorrel too much either. Both heat and acidity will cause the sorrel’s deep seasonal green to oxidize, and brackish-brown has never been an eye-catching color.

Sorrel Pesto
1/2-pound sorrel – center stem removed
1/4-cup blanched almonds
1-tablespoon lemon zest
2 garlic cloves – roughly chopped
1/2-teaspoon salt
1/2-cup almond oil
1/4-cup canola oil

Place all the ingredients in the blender or food processor, and process until smooth.

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