Many people probably haven’t had the opportunity to try sorrel, a surprisingly spritely, bright green herb. Yet it was not so long ago that this tasty herb was a standard in kitchen gardens. The flavor of the tangy, lemony, spinach-like leaves should earn this a place in everyone’s kitchen. Rich in potassium and vitamins A, B1 and C, they have been part of healthful diets and botanic medicine for thousands of years.
Sorrel is related to the rhubarb plant, which explains it’s tanginess. And it is zesty enough to stand in for lemon in a variety of recipes. Try shredded sorrel raw in salads — it can even replace the dressing. “Sorrel imparts so great a quickness to the salad,” said 18th-century herbalist John Evelyn, “that it should never be left out.” Raw leaves are nice in sandwiches, used as a garnish, or layered between fillets of fish or chicken before baking. When cooked, sorrel has a variety of uses, from classic soup to sauces for fish and poultry.
Sorrel pairs well with:
– Sorrel + fish (especially fatty fish, such as salmon or mackerel)
– Sorrel + shellfish
– Sorrel + bacon
– Sorrel + potatoes
– Sorrel + rice
– Sorrel + lentils & beans
– Sorrel + leafy greens (spinach, Swiss chard, kale)
– Sorrel + eggs
– Sorrel + chicken
– Sorrel + mustard
– Sorrel + goat cheese
– Add to soups
– Make it into a sauce for fish
– Add to omelets and scrambled eggs
– Add to a stuffing for meat
– Shred sorrel and stuff it into fish
– Add to quiches
– Add to mashed potatoes
– Add to hummus
– Add to pasta
– Add to mixed-leaf and herb salads
– Add to chard and spinach or use anywhere you would use those
– Make it into a pesto, to use in pasta, on pizza
- 1 bunch sorrel leaves, about 2 packed cups
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 small clove garlic, peeled
- 3 cups chopped sorrel leaves (about 3 ½ ounces)
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese, preferably goat feta
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
Combine garlic, nuts, and cheese in food processor and pulse until the mixture has a coarse texture. Add in sorrel leaves and pulse until combined. Stream in olive oil until desired consistency is reached. Season with salt and pepper and serve over warm pasta, couscous, or as a dip.
To use the pesto on pasta: For every pound of dried pasta cooking in a kettle of boiling water, stir together in a heated serving bowl 3/4 cup of the pesto and 2/3 cup of the hot cooking water. When the pasta is al dente, drain it in a colander, add it to the pesto mixture, and toss the mixture until the pasta is coated well.
Sorrel & Microgreens Flat Bread
- 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast
- 3/4 cup warm water (110 degrees)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
- Coarse sea salt
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for bowl and drizzling
- 1 recipe of Sorrel Pesto (see above)
- 2 c micro greens
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine yeast and water, and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir well. Pulse flour and 1 teaspoon salt in a food processor to combine. Add yeast mixture and oil. Process just until dough forms. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for 1 minute. Shape into a ball. Place in an oiled bowl, and turn to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Punch dough. Divide into 4 pieces. Shape each piece into a 6-inch disk. Drizzle with oil. Sprinkle with salt. Place flatbreads on an inverted baking sheet. Bake, without turning, until both sides of each flatbread are golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool completely on sheets. Cut each flatbread in half crosswise.
Spread 2 tablespoons pesto on each flatbread, and top with 1/2 cup edible weeds. Drizzle with oil, and sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately.
Sorrel Salad with Creamy Chive Dressing
- 1/4 cup whole-milk yogurt
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon minced shallot
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups sorrel, coarse stems discarded and leaves torn into bite-size pieces
- 4 cups hearts of romaine, torn into bite-size pieces
- 2 cups frisée, trimmed and torn into bite-size pieces
- 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tablespoons loosely packed fresh tarragon, leaves coarsely chopped if large
Whisk together all dressing ingredients in a large bowl.
Toss together all salad ingredients with dressing in bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
Sorrel & Goat Cheese Quiche
2-3 cups sorrel, coarsely chopped
a few scallions, chopped
3-4 ounces goat cheese (chevre)
1½ cups milk
¼ teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spread goat cheese (or any strong flavored cheese) in the bottom of a pie crust. Cover with chopped sorrel and scallions. Beat eggs, salt and milk together. Pour over greens. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until top is golden brown.
Chicken with Sorrel
- 2 tablespoons butter or extra virgin olive oil
- 1 2 1/2- to 3-pound chicken, cut into serving pieces
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large or 2 medium onions, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices
- 6 cups 6 cups loosely packed sorrel, about 1/2 pound, trimmed and washed
1. Put butter in large skillet, preferably nonstick, and turn heat to medium-high. When butter begins to melt, swirl it around pan. When its foam subsides and it begins to brown, add the chicken, skin side down. Cook, rotating pieces after 3 or 4 minutes so they brown evenly. As they brown on the skin side, sprinkle them with salt and pepper and turn them over; sprinkle skin side with salt and pepper as well. If necessary, lower heat to medium to prevent burning. Remove chicken to a plate when chicken is completely browned all over, in 10 to 15 minutes.
3. Cook about 10 minutes longer, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and sorrel is dissolved into onions and liquid. Serve hot, with rice or crusty bread.
Sorrel Wrapped Goat Cheese and Beet Stacks
- 6 medium yellow or red beets (2 1/2 pounds with greens), trimmed, leaving 1 inch of stems attached
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 (1 1/2-inch-diameter) logs fresh mild goat cheese (herbed or plain; 8 ounces total), chilled
- 30 fresh sorrel leaves (about 4 by 2 inches), leaves halved lengthwise and center ribs and stems discarded
Preheat oven to 425°F. Wrap beets in foil in 2 packages (3 per package) and roast in middle of oven until tender, 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours. When cool enough to handle, peel beets and cut off stems and root ends. Halve beets crosswise and arrange, cut sides down, on a work surface. Cut out a cylinder from each half with cookie cutter. Halve each cylinder lengthwise, then cut crosswise into generous 1/4-inch-thick slices.
Line a tray with plastic wrap and brush plastic wrap with some oil. Cut cheese logs crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices with an oiled knife, then halve slices. Arrange cheese slices in 1 layer on tray and brush with some oil, then top each with a slice of beet. Arrange sorrel leaf halves, veined sides up, on work surface. Put a cheese and beet stack in middle of each leaf half, then wrap sorrel over stack and secure with a pick.
Cooks notes:·Beets can be roasted and sliced 2 days ahead and chilled in a sealed plastic bag.
·Cheese and beet stacks (without sorrel) can be assembled 1 day ahead and chilled on tray, covered with plastic wrap.
·Sorrel leaves can be trimmed 1 day ahead and chilled in a sealed plastic bag lined with dampened paper towels.
·Hors d’oeuvres can be assembled 4 hours ahead and chilled, loosely covered with plastic wrap.
Cauliflower & Sorrel Soup
1 large head cauliflower, stem discarded, florets chopped
1 medium potato, peeled and chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 cups light chicken stock
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
6 large sorrel leaves, stems trimmed, then shredded
2 tablespoons caviar (optional)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Place the cauliflower florets, potato, and onion in a saucepan with the butter and oil. Heat gently and, when the contents start to sizzle, cover with a lid and sweat everything over a low heat for about 10 minutes. The vegetables should not be at all colored.
Add the stock and bring to a boil, then pour in the milk and return gently to a boil. (This way, there will be no scum forming in the milk.) Season to taste, then simmer, uncovered, for 10-15 minutes when the vegetables should be soft.
Pour in half the cream, then puree in a food processor or blender, or blend in the pan with an immersion blender. Pass the puree through a sieve into a clean pan, rubbing with the back of a ladle.
Stir in the rest of the cream. Taste for seasoning and bring the soup to a boil. Ladle into soup plates, top with sorrel shreds, and add a spoonful of caviar to each. Serve.
Butter Braised Radishes with Sorrel
- 1 cup vegetable stock or water
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 pounds radishes with their greens, radishes quartered
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 cup (packed) sorrel leaves, stemmed and thickly sliced
In a large skillet, bring the vegetable stock and butter to a boil over moderate heat. Add the radishes and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are crisp-tender and the liquid has thickened slightly, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a shallow bowl. Scatter the sorrel over the top and serve.