Kitchen Medicine: Green Sauces with Nettle


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An installment in my continued commitment to not waste the abundant and aggressive nettle crop I have growing in my yard. These green sauces are an embrace of life for me, a pathway to the things that I love: recipe collecting, discovery of brilliant herbal use and reason to shop for interesting ingredients, green or otherwise. Please come along and sauce with me.

To Blanch Nettle/Remove the Sting:

Use tongs or gloves to handle prior to blanching

Heat a small amount of water in a large pot

Plunge nettle leaf into hot water or place in a steamer basket

Boil for 3-7 minutes until just wilted

Refresh with cold water or in a bowl of iced water

For Nettle Salsa Verde:

6-7 tomatillos, remove husks, scrub under water

4 cups nettle leaf (1/3 pound, blanched

1 sweet onion, peeled and quartered.

2-3 Serrano chilis

4 cloves garlic, peeled

12 to 15 sprigs of cilantro

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/2 tsp salt or to taste

find preparation instructions here

For Nettle Pesto:

3 cups nettle leaves, blanched

1/4 cup fresh mint leaves

1 clove garlic, chopped into pieces

1/2 cup pine nuts which you can toast a bit or you don’t have to

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/3 cup olive oil

1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

2-3 tablespoons softened butter

salt and pepper to taste

Find preparation instructions here


Mediterranean Grains and Greens by Paula Wolfert

---Deepest gratitude to Andrea Klunder, my podcast boss. Find her at

Original music by Dylan Rice




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Dina Ranade is a Registered Herbalist with the American Herbalist Guild and a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist. She is also a mom of three - two daughters in college and a 17 year old son finishing up high school. Dina loves cooking for her family despite the challenges that this creates. She passionately loves exploring culinary herbalism and has been working on stocking her home kitchen apothecary or medicine cabinet.

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