The Scents of Summer–Sorrel

I absolutely love to plant a garden every year, and this year it’s been even more enjoyable. COVID-19 has had us all looking for ways to spend the new-found hours suddenly available in our lives. One of the best ways to fill those hours is to plant a few flowers or vegetables. It can be a garden in the back yard, a window box, a balcony planter or any space where a little soil can be placed. 

My garden has two parts–an herb garden where I grow chives, thyme, rosemary, oregano and sorrel, to name a few. Herbs have been a great hobby and they add flavor to any recipe. The second part of my garden is made up of a few vegetables that I enjoy during the summer and early fall. 

Today, I’d like to talk about Sorrel. Every winter, when my seed catalogues arrive, I spend hours studying them, looking for something I can grow in my area of the world. It’s a great way to pass the long winter hours when the garden is hidden under a smooth skirt of snow. 

One year I decided to plant Sorrel, and it has been an amazing experience. When spring arrives, it is one of the first plants to push out from under the last remnants of snow.

Wikipedia describes it as;

“Sorrel is a slender herbaceous perennial plant about 60 centimeters (24 in) high, with roots that run deep into the ground, as well as juicy stems and edible, arrow-shaped leaves.”

I discovered that Sorrel is perfect in a sauce for fish, particularly Salmon steaks or fillets. It is also delicious with roast or broiled chicken. 

I made this sauce just the other day, and it was delicious, lemony and tart. 

First, I had to pick the leaves. As you see, the leaves are a very rich, dark green.

My recipe is very simple and easy to make. 

In the bowl of a food processor, combine 3 ounces of fresh Sorrel leaves (about three handfuls, stems removed), 2 egg yolks, and 2 teaspoons of lemon juice, along with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Pulse until well blended. The leaves will make the mixture a bright green color.

Now the tricky part. With your blender on its slowest speed, very gradually add a cup of grapeseed or canola oil until blended. The sauce will thicken beautifully. There’s no cooking required, just a few ingredients and a blender. Once you’ve added all the oil, stop the blender, taste the sauce and add more salt if you think you need it.

Here’s what my sauce looks like when I’m finished. 

You can store this sauce in your refrigerator for up to three days. I’ve actually kept it for four days and it was still smooth and so tasty. It gives the fish or chicken a fresh, lemony taste, a whole new eating experience. And the people I’ve served this to often remark on the cheerful color it brings to the fish or chicken served with it.

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