Revenge on the nettles

Yesterday was the PERFECT day for the allotment. Since I got back from Brilliant Holiday, I feel like I haven’t taken much time out, away from the steady stream of obligations associated with being a Strong Independent Woman (for that is what I am) and the high amount of work I must do in order to ensure my continued survival, so with the weather being so fantastic, I bid my responsibilities farewell once again and headed to my little rented patch of land.

I’d come across a recipe for nettle rarebit online. Now, one thing the allotment is not short of is nettles. I’d say if somebody came along and harvested everything edible from my allotment, it’d be around 40% nettles. It’s a sign of fertile soil, but had hitherto been an occupational hazard as I worked on the more cultivable parts.

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Nettles exist only to cause misery. Like the Tory party. OOPS.

It was time for revenge. I harvested the nettles in a way I could only describe as ‘gingerly’.

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It’s funny because I’m ginger. Albeit dyed-ginger.

After washing them, equally gingerly, I fried them until they wilted – it’s at this point that the internet assures me they lose their sting. I also read that if you stroke the leaves the right way, they don’t sting, but I wasn’t willing to try this. I’ve had nettle soup before, but never eaten the leaves more or less as they are. All my instincts were saying “NO, do not eat stinging rarebit. It will hurt”.

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Turns out it was absolutely delicious. I still have some leftover nettles and am assured they’ll keep for a few days, so I will try this again without a doubt.

A few other promising things are happening – I’m continuing the potato digging, and anyone who knows me well will know that this is my absolute favourite thing to do on the allotment. Fork goes into ground, fork comes up and these beautiful golden potential chips are looking at you, waiting to be picked up. A few things that look like they’ll be pumpkins are also starting to appear.

I cleared out the greenhouse (how I’ve managed to get it cluttered when it’s only existed for a couple of month is another question entirely) and repotted a few aubergines. Some of them (those on the sunnier side) are doing far better, so to make room on that side, I took some of the weaker-looking aubergines and moved them to the ‘terrace greenhouse’, where I can keep a close eye on them. I’d love it if I successfully managed to grow an aubergine that’s bigger than my ear, which was the rough size of my record-holder so far. Excited to see how these ones do!

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