Make Creamy Burdock Soup from Weeds!
This recipe for Creamy Burdock Soup is made from young foraged burdock leaves. The ingredients for this tasty soup are more plentiful in spring when we crave fresh greens. Make Creamy Burdock Soup from whole milk, butter, ramps or onions, mushrooms (foraged if you have them!), a bit of flour, and some burdock leaves.
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What is Burdock?
Burdock is a weed that grows along roadsides, disturbed soil, pastures, and fields over most of the United States and Canada. This wild plant is a great source of vitamins and minerals that you can pick for free! If you’re new to foraging burdock is a good plant to try because it is relatively easy to identify.
The scientific name for burdock is Arctium lappa and you may eat the roots, leaves, flower stalks, and leaf stalks of this plant. You can read more about identifying it here.
I also have a recipe for the leaf stalks in my post Foraging for Burdock and Making Carduni.
Tips for Foraging for Burdock
Any time you forage for wild food, there are some rules to follow for your safety. Use a reliable plant identification book when you go out foraging and be sure to do the following:
- Positively identify all plants as edible before consuming
- Forage in areas that are not contaminated with herbicides or other dangerous chemicals
- Stay safe – take a cell phone and don’t wander off into unknown areas
- Bring water, sunscreen, and an epi-pen if you are allergic to stings
- Learn to identify poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac before you go foraging
- Never taste any plants you are unsure about
Cooking the Leaves to Make Creamy Burdock Soup
This recipe for Creamy Burdock Soup mainly uses the leaves of the plant. You’ll find that the leaves have a very strong flavor unless they are cooked in 2 changes of water. I don’t bother with changing the water, since I prefer a higher nutrient content and the strong flavor doesn’t bother me. Save the cooled water to add to your chickens’ feed, pour into the compost pile, or dilute and water plants with it.
Wash, chop and boil the leaves until tender. Drain the water, add fresh water and bring to a boil. Then drain the cooking water again to prepare them for this tasty soup!
Creamy Burdock Soup
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 3 or 4 sliced mushrooms
- 1 cup sliced ramps or green onions
- 4 Tbs flour
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1 cup burdock leaves, chopped, cooked and drained
- garlic salt and pepper to taste
- Prepare burdock leaves and set aside.
- Melt butter in medium sauce pan on medium heat.
- Add sliced mushrooms and ramps to butter, sautee until browned.
- Add flour to sauteed vegetables and stir well.
- Slowly add milk to pan and stir to combine with flour and vegetables.
- When milk is thoroughly combined with flour mixture, turn the burner up to medium high heat.
- Add cooked burdock leaves to pan and combine well.
- Cook and stir constantly, bring soup to a low boil.
- Cook at a slow boil for 3 to 5 minutes until thickened.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Ladel soup into bowls and garnish with chopped ramps or green onion, if desired.
- Makes approximately 4 cups of soup.
Try Foraging for Wild Food to Save Money and Increase Nutrients in Your Diet
I like foraging for wild plants for many reasons. My experience with foraging started when I was 7 or 8 years old growing up on the farm. Even as a kid I enjoyed having the knowledge of how to find free food in the fields and woods. I collected ramps, cattail roots, wild greens, blackberries, and apples from around the farm. Learning to identify a new wild edible from my Dad’s army survival book was pretty exciting!
I don’t think I realized how nutrient-rich those foraged foods were as a kid. But now I like knowing that my food is fresh from my garden or the field and the vitamins are at their peak.
Gathering wild foods is a great way to get in touch with nature and eat a healthy diet. Try learning to identify a new edible plant or two every year to increase your foraging knowledge!
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In addition to writing for her own websites, Lisa has contributed articles to The Prepper Project and Homestead.org.
The author lives outside of Chicago with her husband, son, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a variety of poultry.