More about Stinging Nettle
More about Nettle - after sooo many questions on yesterday's post, here's some more info & answers:
Nettle is covered in tiny little hairs, which when brushed against your skin act like hypodermic needles, injecting chemicals into your body which cause a severe reaction. The best antidote is to rub fresh Dock or Plantain leaves straight onto the skin.
Once you cook / heat or dry the leaves, Nettle no longer stings. So it's perfectly safe to put Nettle in your tea or food, an no you won't get a stung throat.
Stinging Nettle Tea / Herbal infusion, is made by packing some fresh nettle leaves into a teapot or your mug, and covering with just boiled water. Leave 10 mins to infuse before drinking. I like to make a really strong Nettle infusion, leave overnight, and then pour into clear glasses to see the amazing dark greeny blue color - kids love this too.
Picking Nettle - use gloves, obviously. Yes I've picked it lots of times without gloves, but my hands sting for days afterwards. If you don't have gloves on hand, I use secatuers or scissors and snip the plant at the base and angle it so that it falls into an open canvas shopping bag, without touching it.
Drying Nettle - I prefer to use fresh, but because it's not growing abundantly in my garden, when I find it in the wild/at friends, I gather a whole lot to dry for later in the year. Tie small bunches with string and hang upside down in a dry, airy, dark place until crispy dry, then store in airtight glass jars.
Cooking - you'll find loads of simple recipes on the internet. I recently ground dried nettle & added 1/2 cup to a GF/DF chocolate cake, it was delicious.
Nettle makes one of the strongest fibres in the world & has a long history of use. Some of my favorite pieces of clothing are made from Nettle fibres - see last photo.
Some of your comments from my online post:
- "The root is excellent for Prostate issues"
- "Nettle is also great for getting rid of dandruff. ...use it in your final hair rinse." - (this is also why I infuse it into my Nettle Hair oil).
- "Simmer, then let it go cold, rub down the work horses . No horse flys would go near them for days."