Asclepias syriacaMilkweed, silkweed, petit cochon • In the Kitchen

New shoots – like asparagus, flower buds – like broccoli, immature pods – like okra are edible. Mild, neutral taste, not bitter, needs to be parboiled before adding to any dish, do not eat raw (same as fiddleheads), pods under 2” (5cm). Pods bigger than 2’’ will be tougher – split the pod open to release the silk – parboil with lemon to retain its milky colour; stuff the de-silked pods with meat, cheese….

Canada’s Aboriginal boiled the flower buds to make sweet syrup, also added to dishes while cooking to sweeten them or with meat to tenderize it.

Add to soups, stews, preserves, stir fry, sauces; use as a vegetable side dish.

Milkweed and vegetables with wild rice galettes

Ingredients • Wild Rice Galettes

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cream
  • cup 2% milk
  • 4 eggs
  • cup butter melted, cooled to room temp
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Black pepper
  • cup minced scallions

Instructions • Galettes

  • Bring water to boil in heavy sauce pan
  • Add rice, 1/2tsp salt, reduce heat, cook covered on low until rice is tender and split open (liquid may not be all absorbed)
  • Drain, cool to room temperature
  • Blend cream, milk, eggs, butter, remaining salt, 1cup cooked rice in blender until smooth
  • Transfer to bowl; add scallions, remaining cooked rice
  • Let stand at room temp for 1 hour

Heat crêpe pan over moderate heat until hot, brush with butter

Spoon batter in pan, rotate to coat bottom, cook until bottom is lightly browned

Flip over, cook until lightly brown, transfer to wax paper lined plate,and continue with waxpaper between each galette.

Ingredients • Filling

  • 6-8 small (>2”) milkweed pods,
  • 4-8 Summer Squash “Sunburst” (cucurbita pepo), sliced
  • 1 Sweet onion, diced
  • Butter
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Salt, pepper

Instructions • Filling

Bring water to boil in a heavy sauce pan - parboil pods for 1-2 minutes, drain, cut in Rondelle – large enough to stand, set aside

In sauté pan add butter, on moderate high heat, add onions and squash

Season with rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper

Sauté until soft, Set aside.

Ingredients • Roasted Red Pepper Coulis

  • 2 red peppers
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • cup olive oil
  • Salt, pepper to taste

Instructions • Roasted Red Pepper Coulis

  • Roast peppers under broiler until skin is black, cool at room temperature in covered bowl, peel skin off, dice
  • In a food processor add all ingredients, liquefy, strain

Ingredients • Garnishes

  • 3 Nasturtium leaves per plate
  • 1 Nasturtium flower per plate
  • 3 Milkweed pods (< 2”) per plate
  • Lemon Juice

Instructions • Garnishes

  • Bring water to a boil, add lemon juice
  • Split open pod to remove silk
  • Parboil 1-2 minutes, drain, set asides

To assemble

  • Pre –heat oven to 400F
  • Cut galettes with 3” square cutter
  • In a shallow baking pan, layer a wild rice galette, add enough milkweed to fill the square, add a second galette, add squash and onion mixture, top with a wild rice galette.
  • Heat through
  • On plate place nasturtium leaves
  • Add stacked galettes
  • Add roasted red pepper coulis
  • Add parboiled Silk
  • Add Nasturtium flowers

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