Cooking With Wood Sorrel

Wood sorrel?

What the heck is that?

If you have been following me, you know that I have been learning how to use the wild edibles that grow here in Southeast Texas.  Wood sorrel is a pretty little plant that grows across much of the US and Canada.  It grows well in our garden and I don’t bother to pull it up as it has such value.

The leaves, flowers, tubers, and immature green seed pods are all edible and have a mild sour, almost lemon flavor. Thus, some have called it “sour grass.”  It looks much like a shamrock and often gets misidentified as clover.  However, the flowers are very different.  There are different types of sorrels with flowers ranging from yellow to white with purple accents like those shown in the picture above (this is what grows here in southeast Texas).  This species is called purple leaf wood sorrel.

Nutrition and Medical Uses

Wood sorrel is high in vitamin C and also contains vitamin A. It can be treated much like spinach and used in salads and sauté dishes.

Wood sorrel leaves are also recommended as a medicinal herb.  Some of its purported beneficial properties are [3]:

  • Diuretic properties
  • Fever reduction
  • Increasing appetite
  • Reducing inflammation when applied topically
  • It has been used to treat scurvy, fevers, nausea and sore throats. To treat mouth sores, chew Wood sorrel until the leaf has turned into a paste. Russians make a cooling beverage from the leaves of Wood sorrel to treat fever [2].”

Please note:  Wood sorrel contains oxalic acid.  Oxalic acid is contained within domesticated plants including spinach and broccoli.  It is not considered a problem when consumed moderately and with a varied diet, however people with gout, rheumatism, arthritis, hyperacidity and kidney stones should avoid it. [1]

In my first post about foraging I gave you some tips about picking wild edibles.  Please check that post before you go out and make sure you are absolutely sure of what you are picking.  Below is a recipe I have used that includes wood sorrel.  I hope you enjoy it!

Spaghetti Squash Casserole with Wood Sorrel

  • 1 lb Italian sausage or breakfast sausage from a tube
  • 1 medium spaghetti squash, halved and seeds removed
  • Several cups of wood sorrel washed, drained, and steams removed.
  • Olive oil
  • 1 red onion, halved and sliced
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup canned coconut milk (or milk of your choice, we use raw goat’s milk)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground sage
  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cut your spaghetti squash in half and use a spoon to remove the seeds and excess threads from your squash.
  3. Place open side up on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and shake on salt and pepper. Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until you can press into your squash and it gives a bit.
  4. While your squash bakes, heat up a large pot under medium-high heat and add your sausage and chopped onions.
  5. Once your sausage is cooked through, add the minced garlic and sauté for 2 minutes.
  6. Add the wood sorrel, milk, and spices. Cover and let simmer until sorrel is wilted.
  7. Pull your spaghetti squash out of the oven and remove with a fork. Careful, it will be hot!
  8. Combine mixture with the egg. Stir thoroughly.
  9. Place the mixed ingredients into a baking dish (or same pot if it’s oven safe) and spread out evenly.
  10. Bake 15-20 minutes or until top is slightly browned.
  11. If you are short on time you can skip the oven step.

 

This is a favorite at our house.   Let me know what you think!

 

Sources:

 

  1. http://www.ediblewildfood.com/wood-sorrel.aspx
  2. http://www.specialtyproduce.com/produce/Wood_Sorrel_10010.php
  3. https://dengarden.com/gardening/oxalis

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *