Healing Weeds - Getting a closer contact with the healing world of herbs and wild plants.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Chenopodium album
NL: Ganzenvoet - F: Chénopode blanc

Also known as Lamb's Quarters, this plant from the family of quinoa and amaranth is also a great pioneer, growing as one of first after a soil has been emptied of its vegetation or newly cultivated.

It is extremely nutritious, and a serving of 180g can cover 281% of one’s daily needs for vitamin A, 46% of one’s daily needs for calcium, 111% of vitamin C and 7% of one’s iron needs. It contains also around 10 times as much vitamin K as one would need per day. Its leaves contain around 12% of high quality protein, meaning that it contains all essential aminoacids. The seeds have about 49% carbohydrate and 16% protein.

Goosefoot is also rich in oxalic acid, so the leaves are best not eaten raw. In order to get the best of it, nutritionally, it is better to blanch the leaves and stems or steam them with a little water until tender (3-5 minutes), leaving the pan open, so that its oxalic acid can evaporate.

A beautiful variety with young leaves coming in pink
The leaves, seeds and stems are absolutely delicious, with a flavour that can be compared to spinach or chard.

The ripe, dried seed (not made into powder) can be stored in jars for consumption during winter time. They can be used soaked overnight and rinsed before using to remove the saponins. The seeds can also be sprouted and added to salads or ground into powder for enriching the meals. This powder can be added to pancakes, breads, rice, etc.

When eaten with beans, the leaves will act as a carminative to prevent gas formation.

Avoid harvesting it from soils overly rich in nitrates, as the leaves can accumulate high amounts of it.

It is not advised to be used by those with rheumatic conditions, arthritis, gout, hyperacidity and kidney stones. It should also not be taken during pregnancy.

To help you to properly identify goosefoot here are some short videos:

Wild Edibles: Lamb's Quarters

Identifying Lamb's Quarters

And here you find detailed info on goosefoot:

Chenopodium album: Survival Plants Memory Course

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