Purslane is nearly unknown and is an under utilized green that is easily grown in the garden as it often volunteers in the garden.
My dad & husband call it a weed. But it is a valuable green, espeically when you consider it is a source of protein, vitamin E, vitamin C, and the best source of Omega 3 fatty acids of any leafy plant. There’s no reason to spend money on fish oil supplements if you have this tasty food source growing in your backyard or vegetable garden. Purslane has more beta-carotene than spinach, as well as high levels of magnesium and potassium. If you think of it as a weed, and you’ll be missing out on one of the most nutritious greens on the planet!!!
Historically it has been used as a remedy for arthritis and inflammation by European cultures. Chinese herbalists found similar benefits, using it in respiratory and circulatory function. Recently, it’s been found that purslane has alpha linolenic acid, a type of omega-3 fatty acid. Researchers see evidence that these substances lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well as make the blood less likely to form clots. And, purslane has only 15 calories per 100 g portion.
Whether you eat it raw in salads, stir-fried, or added to soups and sauces, purslane is a delicious addition to many recipes. It’s easy to grow and tastes great!
Storage: Best if used fresh. But, if you must store it, wrap purslane in a moist paper towel and store in a plastic bag in the vegetable bin of your refrigerator.
Preparation: Wash. Remove larger stems. Some recipes use leaves only. Purslane can be substituted for spinach or wild greens in lasagnas, filled pastas, and Greek-style tarts.
Recipes for Purslane
Cucumber Purslane Yogurt salad
5 large Cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut into quarter-round slices
1/4 pound Purslane, large stems removed, washed and drained well
2 tablespoons each, Fresh chopped mint, cilantro and chervil
4 cups Whole milk yogurt
1/4 cup Virgin olive oil
3 cloves Garlic, puréed with the blade of a knife
2 teaspoon ground Coriander
kosher Salt and ground Black Pepper
Place the cucumber, purslane and herbs into a large bowl. In another bowl, stir together the yogurt, olive oil and garlic, coriander and season to taste with salt. Add the yogurt mixture to the vegetables and mix well. Add a pinch of ground black pepper. Taste the dressed cucumber-purslane salad for seasoning, adding a little more salt if needed. Serve chilled.
Perfect Purslane Salad – The combination of this simple salad with a simple dressing is simply delicious (and very healthful)
- 2 cups purslane leaves and stems, chopped
- 2 cooked potatoes, chopped
- 4 cups heirloom salad greens or wild greens
- 1 bunch scallions, chopped
- 1 medium carrot, grated
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
Mix together all ingredients, toss with your favorite creamy salad dressing, and serve.
Dianna’s Tuscan Bread Salad
- 2 cups Heirloom Tomatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 small red onions, thinly sliced
- 2 heads of Green Garlic, very finely minced — or 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 cup fresh Genovese Basil leaves, torn into small pieces
- 1 cup Purslane Leaves – removed from stems
- 1/2 c Italian Flat Leaf Parsley, rough chopped
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 loaf of hearty multi grain artisan bread, cut into bite-size pieces (1″ chunks)
In a bowl, combine the tomatoes, purslane, parsley, onion, garlic and basil. Drizzle with the 1/2 cup olive oil and the 3 tblsps vinegar, season with salt and pepper and toss well. Add bread cubes & toss well. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Just before serving, toss the salad again and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. If the bread seems dry, add a little more oil or vinegar.
Semi-Homemade NOTE: You can substitute a bottle of Balsamic Vinegar Dressing for the vinegar & oil in this recipe.