Friday, June 12, 2015

Milkweed Recipe Roundup

Although it is too late to gather and eat the shoots of common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), the flower buds are at a great size to eat, and the pods will be maturing soon. Although many books say to boil milkweed three times for 10 minutes in clean water, it just isn't necessary, and was likely based on someone trying to boil the bitterness out of misidentified dogbane shoots. Milkweed should not be bitter at all, and tastes a bit like green beans. Once boiled a single time for about 5-7 minutes, add milkweed to recipes.


 Milkweed is a food source for Monarch butterflies, as well as many others, but in our experiences, we have only seen the caterpillars eat the leaves, so don't feel guilty about collecting the flower clusters or pods to eat. We even raised a few caterpillars to butterflies, offering them every part of the milkweed, but they only ever ate the leaves. In our area of southeastern Connecticut, there are thousands of acres of fallow fields and wildlife management areas all filled with milkweed, chicory, sumacs, and berries, so I don't think a family of three can overharvest a few meals of milkweed flower buds or pods.

1 comment:

Louisette said...

Wonderfull fotos, greeting from Belgium