The rampant sorrel

The rampant sorrel

I decided today that it was time to do something with my two huge clumps of sorrel. For a while I’ve been feeling guilty about not making any use of it, while it just sits there growing and growing, and growing some more.

Sorrel after a bath

Sorrel after a bath

Extra impetus came from inspecting the toppling flower stems and seeing the soggy leaves underneath. I cleared those up and cut back the thick ribbed stems, hoping that such a severe haircut will help encourage fresh new growth – though this will, of course, also perpetuate the cycle of guilt.

Still, I pulled off a bucket of the large green shield-shaped leaves, and mixed me some pesto.

Gunk from the green giant

Gunk from the green giant

One litre jug of torn sorrel, a few big fat glugs of olive oil, 3 cloves of garlic, one handful of pine nuts, a few sprigs of parsley and the end of a lump of parmesan, was whizzed up and stirred into egg pasta, with more parmesan on top.

One generous portion for me, and another for the fridge.

Pasta with sorrel pesto

Pasta with sorrel pesto

I’ve never eaten sorrel before but I like lemony tangs and acid flavours, so was optimistic. I enjoyed the unusual flavour which I still can’t quite put my finger on. It is bitter, and it does have something of the lemon about it, but there’s something very much of its own too, which I can’t find a satisfactory description of.

Anyway, I’ll try soup when I next make some stock, and will also be mixing it with other salad leaves. As for the pesto, I think I overdid the sorrel quantities, and next time I’ll tone it down a bit, or add some other ingredients – perhaps something with a bit of sweetness. Any ideas?