My late grand mother told me ~15 years ago that during the World War II she had to eat quite some “stinging nettle soup” (ÏƒÎ¿ÏÏ€Î± Ï„ÏƒÎ¿Ï…ÎºÎ½Î¯Î´Î±Ï‚) to survive. Since then I’ve been meaning to learn how to cook this food, but it wasn’t up until 10 days ago when I asked a great aunt of mine (now in her mid-70s), that I learned how to cook it. Since then, I also learned that Scandinavians, Turks, Romanians, some villages in France, and native American Indians also eat nettles. I haven’t tried the recipe as it’s not the right season to harvest them, but I am transferring the recipe as told by my aunt.
So, first, you need to wait for the time that nettles grow, around February-March. You have to use some thick gloves in order to not get irritated by the nettle stinging. Harvest the nettles while young, before they have bloomed. Wash well.
On a big pan put lots of water, bring it to boil, and cook the nettles until tender. Drain the water away, and bring the nettles into a blender to make them a puree (traditionally, Greeks would use a wooden tool to “beat” the nettles until they become somewhat mashed instead of puree). Add some water on a pan, bring to a boil, and add the nettle puree.
While stirring, add some salt, tender onion greens (chopped), one garlic clove crushed, olive oil, a bit of lemon juice, and just enough of white flour to get the soup thickened. Eat warm.
As a variation, for these modern days we live in, I guess you can also use some vegetable stock instead of salt, to give it a more distinct flavor.