Where I live in Upstate New York, there are surprisingly a lot of wild herbs and even fruits that commonly grow. I found 2 of the most common wild herbs on a walk down the bike trail which goes on for miles and runs through not just the city areas but also the wooded areas as well. The top photo that I took is known as Motherwort which right now,being it is early spring time, it is in the early stages of growing but still edible. Motherwort was and still is used commonly as an aid in a few heart conditions and even is used to relieve menstrual cramps and regulate menstrual flow. Many people use Motherwort as a tea which simple enough you just boil it down like tea leaves and drink it, however some people go through quite a process and make tincture out of it. I myself have tried the tincture form and it is aweful tasting but it really does relieve the pain with menses.
The second photo I took is of wild Garlic Mustard. While most think it is just a weed of some kind, it actually isn’t. You can eat wild garlic mustard in a variety of different things one of which is a pesto. I found a recipe for an awesome Garlic Mustard Pesto and I am giving all the credit for that recipe to ediblewildfood.com being it is their recipe and not my own. Going back to the photo, wild garlic mustard grows everywhere here in New York. What’s cool about this wild beauty is the entire plant is edible. You can eat the stems,the flowers,the seeds, and even the leaves, but if you do eat the leaves you might want to harvest them before it gets hot outside because the leaves will taste bitter. The roots are spicy tasting almost like horseradish and the flowers, you can chop them up and put them in a salad to give it not just color but a hint of garlic flavor without the garlic.
I never knew that so many edible plants grew up in my area in New York. These two finds were perfect and definitely made me question what else possibly grows in Upstate New York.
Garlic Mustard Pesto
>> 3 tbsp. garlic mustard roots
>> 1 cup garlic mustard leaves
>> 3/4 cups fresh parsley
>> 1 cup fresh basil
>> 4 garlic cloves
>> 1 ½ cups of low-sodium olives
>> 2 cups of walnuts or pine nuts
>> 1/2 cup mellow miso
>> 1 ¼ cups olive oil or as needed
Finely chop the garlic mustard roots and garlic cloves in a food processor or by hand. Then add in finely chopped parsley, garlic mustard leaves and basil.
Add finely chopped nuts to the mixture. Then add the olive oil and miso and process until you’ve created a coarse paste.
You may want to use less olive oil than what this recipe calls for – add in a little at a time until you have the consistency you like. https://www.ediblewildfood.com/garlic-mustard-pesto-recipe.aspx this is the link for the recipe for Garlic Mustard pesto. All credit goes to that website for the recipe.