Inventory, lb : 5.81
This item was last sold on : 12/01/23
Garden sorrel is a hardy, deep-rooted plant that grows in thick, mounded clusters, reaching 30 to 60 centimeters tall and spreading just as wide. It blooms tall whorled spikes of small, reddish-green flowers when mature. The multi-stemmed plant produces large, soft, light-green leaves that grow from a center rosette and can reach several inches long, though they are often harvested young when tender and less bitter, around 10 centimeters in length. The broad leaves look like a cross between arugula and spinach with their elongated arrow shape, and they offer a bright, tart, grassy, lemon-like flavor.
Sorrel is available year-round, with a peak season in the spring.
Garden sorrel, also known as English or Common sorrel, is a perennial herb botanically classified as Rumex acetosa in the Polygonaceae or buckwheat family. Members of the genus, Rumex, are commonly referred to as docks, and Garden sorrel is often nicknamed Spinach dock thanks to the similar look of its leaves. Garden sorrel is related to both French and sheep sorrel varieties and is often mistaken for French sorrel, though they are separate species. The name "sorrel" is derived from the French word for "sour," which appropriately describes the plant's acidic, tart taste. It is often the first green to show in springtime, and hence it has become an annual beacon of warm weather as winter retreats.
Garden sorrel is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, which are great for boosting the immune system, and is also rich in potassium, which plays a role in lowering blood pressure and increasing blood circulation. It is also a good source of nutrients like manganese and iron. Garden sorrel gets its tangy flavor from oxalic acid, which is a naturally occurring compound that is considered toxic when consumed in large quantities, so moderation is key to avoid even minor side effects like stomach pain or abdominal cramps. While it is not recommended for persons with kidney disease, arthritis, gout, or who are pregnant, it's highly unlikely that the average person would consume enough to be considered truly dangerous. Just as it is for humans, the oxalic acid content is also potentially harmful to animals if overly consumed, but luckily, the inherently sour flavor serves as a natural deterrent for most pets.
Garden sorrel may be used raw or cooked, serving alternately as a salad green or fresh herb. The leaves are best used fresh when young, tender, and milder. They can be used as a garnish or added to sandwiches and salads alongside milder-tasting greens. Older, larger leaves work better in cooked applications, as they are more sharp and bitter. The leaves tend to dissolve with long cooking times as they impart their lemony flavor, making them a wonderful addition to soups and stews, like cream of sorrel soup. They can be sautéed similarly to spinach, used as a flavoring agent in omelets or casseroles, pureed into sauces, or even used to wrap tougher cuts of meat because their natural acidity can help tenderize the meat while stewing or braising. In fact, their acid content is so high that it is recommended only to use a stainless-steel knife when cutting sorrel leaves and refrain from cooking in metal pots altogether, as the acidity can discolor and erode metal cookware. Garden sorrel works especially well in egg or fish dishes, like salmon or mackerel, and starchy soups, like potato or rice. Its sour flavor is nicely balanced by ingredients like cream, sour cream, yogurt, cheese, and mayonnaise, as its fatty creaminess tames the sharp taste of the sorrel while still absorbing the bright, lemony flavor. Other complementary ingredients include caviar, oysters, lentils, spinach, kale, chard, onion, shallot, mustard, parsley, tarragon, mint, chervil, and nutmeg. Fresh Garden sorrel does not store well and will last in the fridge for just a day or two when loosely wrapped in plastic or for up to a week if rinsed, patted dry, then rolled in a paper towel before storing in a plastic or similar bag. To prolong its use, try cooking the leaves in butter to make a puree, which can be segmented and frozen for future use, such as in soup. Leaves can be preserved for up to a year when dried or frozen, however, they will lose much of their bright flavor.
Garden sorrel has been used since ancient times throughout Europe. It is said that ancient Romans used to suck on sorrel leaves to alleviate thirst, hence it is theorized that the Latin name for the plant, Rumex, is derived from the Latin "rumo," meaning "to suck." Today, sorrel has found a home in many variations of soup from France to Ukraine, such as the classic French soupe aux herbes and the ever-popular Ukranian shchaveloviy borscht, or green borscht.
Garden sorrel is native to Europe and Asia, where it has been cultivated for centuries. Today, it is widely distributed in temperate regions worldwide, where it thrives in moist, damp soils and is often foraged rather than cultivated. It was likely brought to the United States with the colonists and has become naturalized in North America. Thanks to its ability to reseed readily, sorrel is widely regarded as a weed and even considered intrusive across nearly all fifty states. This rare and unique herb can be grown at home, or found at specialty stores and farmer's markets, especially in the spring or summer.
Restaurants currently purchasing this product as an ingredient for their menu.
|Avant||San Diego CA||858-675-8505|
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|InterContinental Banquet Kitchen||San Diego CA||619-501-9400|
Recipes that include Garden Sorrel. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Amateur Gourmet||Salmon and Sorrel Troisgros|
|Becks and Posh||French Style Sorrel Soup|
|David Lebovitz||Ottolenghi's Fried Beans with Sorrel, Feta & Sumac|
|Trini Gourmet||Sorrel Drink|
|Not Derby Pie||Soup of Fresh Shelling Beans and Sorrel|