Rumor has it, that it’s Spring! Those living on the East Coast may beg to differ. New Yorkers have been wrapped up in scarves and down filled coats for months now, and the sniffles and coughs of the winter season are still lingering.
Nature is moving forward in spite of the dipped temperatures and signs of the seasonal transition are happening, (I promise!).
Garlic Mustard is one of the early Spring greens to sprout upwards from the dormant earth. This is a fairly easy wild food to identify for foraging newbies, as the crushed kidney shaped leaves are strongly scented with the essence of garlic. If you are curious to find it yourself, and don’t trust your nose, a copy of Dina Falconi’s book, Foraging & Feasting will help you with plant i.d. It has some great illustrations of what to look for. The edible horseradish like root is also tasty. I use it to spice up fermented jerusalem artichokes.
In celebration (and anticipation) of warmer weather, I created a wild pizza, appropriately grain free, for those that were observing Passover. (Its taken a while to post this to the web:)), and tasty enough for all flour and gluten consumers as well. The garlic mustard makes an appearance in the pesto topping. The base is a blend of zucchini, coconut flour, and ground flax.
Start by creating the base…
Grate 1 zucchini on a micro plane or similarly fine grater.
Add 1/3 teaspoon of sea salt and let the zucchini sit for 15 minutes. The salted zucchini will release its moisture and once its been drained, rinsed and squeezed, the zucchini flesh will be ready for mixing with the rest of the dry pizza base ingredients.
Add 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of coconut flour
3 teaspoons of freshly ground flax seeds
2 teaspoons of olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons of oregano, or if you are lucky enough to have some wild bergamot, a.k.a, (monarda fistulosa),add this.
Mold spoonfuls of the mixture into 3/8″ thick round discs about 3″ in diameter and bake in the oven at 400 degrees on parchment paper, until the edges crisp.
Top with your favorite pesto recipe, which in this case, is the garlic mustard pesto…
1/2 cup of the wild garlic mustard leaves
1/2 cup of parsley
A handful of pre soaked walnuts
A pinch of salt and pepper
1/8″ to a 1/4″ cup of olive oil.
Blend all the ingredients together. Add grated pecorino or parmesan if you like, but, since, it can be put in the freezer for future use without the cheese, I usually don’t add it, or frankly miss it.
Top pesto onto the crisped zucchini base, add mozarella and toppings of your choice. Heat in the oven at 400 degrees until melted and golden.
Eat immediately. These petite treats are perfectly party sized and are delicious!
This week, I start teaching at the NYBG. There are still spaces in this Wednesday’s class so, if you have been wanting to make your own herbal skincare, click here. Also, on Sunday 15th, I will be leading the first of several Spring Herb walks, also listed.
If you like the recipes I post here, know there are additional fun ideas on my instagram page. Check out the calendula popcorn post!
If you are looking for Mother’s Day gift ideas, consider Petalune Herbals skincare. (We are still working out our shipping rates, so, if you live in the NYC area, its probably easier to meet for a personal delivery!)
Hope to see you soon in class or in person.