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Goutweed as spinach.

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It's a nice leaf vegetable, if you like the taste of anise.

The young leaf of goutweed (Aegopodium podagraria), still folded up, is said by some to be the best wild vegetable out there. It might be, if you like the taste of anise (or fennel or sweet cicely or licorice - take your pick, although real licorice root doesn't taste of anise at all). I don't.

So, if you do in fact like anise: eat those folded-up leaves either minced-up in salads (not too much of them per salad, though: the taste does get very strong in quantity), make them into spinach-like stews, use them in salty pies and omelettes, or use your imagination.

I've heard that the name goutweed is a misnomer: it should be goatweed, from the way some of the leaves look much like a goat's hoof. Medicinal uses, umm, I don't like the taste of anise so haven't bothered with it, despite it being an enormously prolific weed in some parts of my garden.

Some of my students have added loads of the leaf to their green powders, though. This green powder is sprinkled on various foods: it is a nice source of minerals.

(I've seen storebought green powders; they've been exorbitantly expensive, as all that's needed for green powders is dried powdered-up leaf of various more or less wild greens, to taste.)

Related entry: Goutweed omelet


...hi read your site regularly... i came across this bit of information regarding the entymology of "goutweed"... the following is a quote from "The generic name is a corruption of the Greek aix, aigos (a goat) and pous, podos (a foot), from some fancied resemblance in the shape of the leaves to the foot of a goat. The specific name is derived from the Latin word for gout, podagra, because it was at one time a specific for gout."

thanx for posting :)

Interesting. Thanks, Giennei!