It's just so exciting to see our members go home with bags bursting with spring's bounty. This is just a friendly reminder that we encourage you to try more than what comes out of the fields. There is also an abundance of herbs and plants growing wild that make delicious additions to your share. Among my favorites for spring are the mulberries.
If you've already been to the farm at least once to pick up your share or volunteer, you'll know it's not hard to find the mulberries. Just in case you haven't noticed, they are the medium sized trees with the shiny, irregularly shaped leaves and the eye-catching red and black berries. Mulberries sometimes come in white so the best way to identify them is by the mitten-shaped leaves with serrated edges. Parents who are unsure how to respond to their child's discovery and fascination with the trees should know that they are edible and delicious! My favorite way to harvest them is one-by-one off the low branches but if you want to stock up, bring a tarp or a large sheet, lay it under the tree and gently shake the branches.
If you're wondering about nutrition, a quick search on nutritiondata.com will show you how they stack up. Mulberries, though high in complex sugars are great sources of fiber, Magnesium, Potassium and Vitamin C. Mulberries go well in any recipe that calls for berries including these very easy recipes for Mulberry Lemonade Smoothies and Mulberry Sage Vinaigrette:
Mulberry Lemonade Smoothie
- 2 cups Mulberries, rinsed
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup, brown sugar, or agave nectar
- Juice from 2 lemons
- cold water or ice
- 5 mint leaves (optional)
Blend all ingredients until smooth. Enjoy.
Mulberry and Flowering Sage Vinaigrette
- 1 cup Mulberries
- 1 handful flowering sage (purple flowers from culinary sage)
- 1 tablespoon sugar or other sweetener
- 1/4 cup water
- balsamic vinegar
Bring mulberries, sweetener and water to a boil. Turn down to simmer, add flowering sage and allow liquid to evaporate, stirring occasionally. When liquid is syrupy, remove from heat, allow to cool 5 minutes. Blend well until smooth. Add balsamic vinegar at the end until the mixture is the consistency of your favorite dressing. Serve cool over salads, or anything you please.
These recipes were developed by me, Zachari Curtis. I'm one of the new staff members this season and am happy to be working with all of you. Stay tuned because I will be posting more recipes made with the delicious forage found at Clagett Farm.