Are you looking for a spring tonic, possibly an almost-free spring tonic? Stinging nettle can be your answer. We have decided that it is on the top of our list for staying healthy.
With renewed focus and dedication to nettle, we are tracking it’s life cycle and finding new stands of it. By far, the easiest to forage and the most delicately flavored is the early spring nettle. Read our post on spring nettle or a more general discussion of nettle leaf for more information on foraging.
Having a delicate flavor means that the nettle can be more highly concentrated in juices and soups. This is the point of our rich and very green soup described here. When a green is this concentrated, then you can have just a cup of it with a meal, along with some other offerings. If the green is not concentrated, we make a whole meal of the soup to get enough of the greens. This can become boring after a bit and we struggle to continue with our soup consumption.
Additions of thick cream and cream cheese make the soup satisfying and appealing to the little guys in this family. When they have a half cup of soup they’ve taken in more nutrition than most full plates of food can offer.
Before you begin your soup making, thoroughly clean the nettle. Those leaves hold on to find bits of sand. Get rid of them. Here are our instructions for cleaning any green. This process is essential when cleaning nettles.
Dense Nettle Soup Ingredients
- 2 quarts rich chicken bone broth (or vegetable broth)
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons Herbs de Provence
- 1 gallon cleaned tips of stinging nettle
- 1/4 cup dry white wine (optional)
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 1 cup cream cheese
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2 heaping tablespoon sorghum flour or thickener of your choice
- 1 cup water
Dense Nettle Soup Steps
- Heat the oil in the largest skillet you have.
- Saute the onion and garlic together until the onion begins to brown. Stir often. You want the onion brown, but not burned. Sprinkle on the Herbs de Provence.
- While the onion is cooking heat up the bone broth in a large soup pot.
- Pile the washed greens on top of the onion mix and toss lightly for a few minutes. The large pile will wilt to almost nothing…or so it will seem.
- Puree the nettle/onion mix in a food processor, being caution because of the heat. You may need to do this in multiple batches, depending on the size of your processor.
- Add each batch of pureed nettles to the soup pot with the bone broth. Stir well so the nettles do not stick to the bottom of the pan.
- When all the nettle mix has been pureed and added to the soup pot, add the cream and white wine, if you are using wine. Keep the soup pot over a very low flame.
- Place the cream cheese in the food processor. Add a large ladle of soup. Process until smooth and creamy. Add more broth if necessary. You want a slush, not a paste.
- Stir the cream cheese slush into the soup.
- Taste for salt and pepper, making any necessary adjustments.
- Measure the cup of water into a medium bowl and add the thickener. Use a small wire whip to mix it up and break up any lumps.
- Slowly add the thickening mixture to your soup, stirring the whole time.
- Keeping the soup over a low flame, allow it to cook for another five minutes while the thickener does its magic. If you prefer a thicker soup, you can repeat the process.
- Serve up in warmed bowls and be healthy!