Perennial Sorrel

By | May 16, 2017

Master Gardener Mary McCroan shows how she keeps the same perennial Fench sorrel growing year after year and uses its leaves to make a delicious and nutritious soup.

The botanical name for French Sorrel is Rumex scutatus. According to Wikipedia, “Rumex scutatus is a plant in the buckwheat family, used as a culinary herb. Its common names include French sorrel, buckler sorrel, shield-leaf sorrel, and sometimes the culinary name “green-sauce”. As a culinary herb, it is used mainly in salads.”

We purchased our seed originally from Bountiful Gardens in Willits, CA. The information that came with the seed says: “Start seed in flats or in the Spring. Transplant 6″ apart into an area with an average to rich, moist soil and partial shade. This is a perennial plant, so pick a spot that will not need to be disturbed. Start cutting leaves when the plant is mature. Cut off flowering spikes or leaf growth will cease. Sorrel is easily grown in any soil that is not alkaline. Divide the plant every 3-4 years. Pick leaves regularly for best quality – small for best flavor. Depth: 1/8″ Spacing: 6″ | When to plant: early spring to summer.”

Here’s the recipe for Sorrel Soup:

· 4 cups chicken, turkey or beef (chunks or ground)
· 4 cups diced potatoes (2 large baking potatoes)
· 4 cups broth or water
· 2-4 cups chopped veggies of your choice (cabbage, bell pepper, carrots, celery, etc)
· 1 onion, chopped
· 2-3 cloves garlic, diced
· 1/2 pound sorrel (5 to 6 cups raw, packed), chopped
· 2 tablespoons butter or oil
· 1 Tbsp fresh or 1 tsp dried dill
· 1 cup milk or 1/2 cup cream or 1 can coconut milk

– Saute meat with onion
– Boil potatoes in broth until tender
– Saute garlic and veggies until tender
– Add sorrel and saute until fully wilted and olive green
– Add meat and onion mixture to pot with potatoes and broth
– Add veggies and sorrel
– Simmer ten minutes
– Add 1 Tbsp fresh or 1 tsp dried dill
– Add milk, cream or coconut milk
– Heat until hot and flavors are blended–maybe five minutes–try not to boil

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