If you like spinach and broccoli, why not try nettles? Green, fresh and healthy, they are a great free vegetable to eat in March and April when they are tender.

Nettles are high in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and full of calcium, magnesium, iron, and potassium; they are also a good source of protein and are said to reduce inflammation, so good for those with arthritis. 

Wear rubber gloves when you pick them and go for the young nettle tops. Wash them well before using them. You can make them into tea, use them in soups and quiches or just eat them sauteed. This recipe is a good way to ‘discover’ them as it’s very straight forward.

Nettle and Blue Cheese Rarebit

You will need:

• 200g nettle leaves

• 200ml tub crème fraiche

• 1 tbsp olive oil

• 1 tsp wholegrain mustard

• 140g blue cheese

• 4 slices sourdough bread.

Method:

1. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan. Add the nettles and sauté for 1 minute until wilted. 

2. Chop the nettles or whizz with a hand-held blender. Then place in a bowl with the crème fraiche, mustard, half the blue cheese. Mix them together and set aside. 

3. Lightly toast the bread on both sides and then divide the cheese and nettle mix between the slices of toast. Top with the remaining cheese and grill until golden. Serve immediately.


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