Wild Plant Diary 18th May

It was pleasure to find out that in North Karelia spring had proceeded much further in comparison to Lapland. We spend last weekend in friends place at Hammaslahti, some 25km south from Joensuu and had opportunity to collect and cook various wild plants. There was goutweed everywhere and it´s very easy and fast to collect too. Fireweed too, now it was pretty small, sprouts were just coming. Personally I use fireweed later in the summer too, you can always use the leaves, but some people just use it on springtime, or early summer. There were nettles and dandelion too, although not us much these ones previously mentioned. From all these green leaf plants you can do bengali style sak. What I have heard, in Bengal there are at least 20 different kinds of green leaf plants commonly used. Palak(spinach)-paneer is pretty well known dish even in Europe nowadays, but one can use many other too, all of them have their particular flavour. Nettle is my personal favourite, by in itself, or with new local potatoes.


I collected some common yarrow too, let´s see if I use it for spicing or as part of some herbal tea. Of course there would have been opportunity to collect much more, but this was nice start anyway, eating wild plants for five days in a row.

What comes to the visual side of the food, sak is kind of mushy style of preparation, need to practice how to make the pictures more attractive. There are people who think it´s foolish or unimportant to post your pictures to instagram and pinterest, but nice pictures happen to be very important way to advertise your food nowadays. In one sense even more important than the food being tasty. Obviously food need to taste good, but if it doesn’t look nice, you don´t get attention in net.

Something green coming now here in lapland too, found nettles from friends courtyard in Rovaniemi, but very small still, have to wait another one week I think.

Cooking wild plants regularly, let´s say 2-3 days a week is one goal, but learning and experimenting still more important. Have to make sure, that I cook with variety of plants. Nettle and goutweed are nice, but pretty common and well known, there are so many others too. Experimenting with various spices and writing down recipes which work especially nice is needed too.

Yours Muni