Lamb's quarters are a weed-like plant that most people don't realize is edible and tasty.Also called wild spinach, pigweed, and goosefoot, lamb's quarter
is common in Europe and Asia and the leaves and seeds of the plant have been found in the stomachs of mummified remains excavated from the bogs of Denmark. Both leaves and seeds are edible, and nutritious. Lamb's quarters grow to about four to six feet high with green leaves that are shaped like the webbed foot of a goose (hence, its alternative name of goosefoot
.) The central stem is squarish and woody, and is used as a walking cane in China. The leaves have a white substance coating the undersides. The taste has been described as earthy and similar to spinach and kale.
Disclaimer: while we may often discuss wild edible foods here on The Kitchn, we do not advocate anyone consuming wild foods unless they can positively identify them or can acquire them from an expert, and are certain that they are free of pesticides.
Seasonal Spotlight: Purslane
Seasonal Spotlight: Fiddlehead Ferns
Seasonal Spotlight: Nasturtiums
(Image: Kathryn Hill)