What to do with pickled sorrel?
Bought it b/c I'd never seen it before. As you might imagine, it's tang city.
I love sorrel, and grow it in my garden, but I've never seen it pickled either. What's it like? Given the way it wilts almost the moment you pick it I'd expect it to be pretty mushy.
As for what to do with it...hmm. A quick google search finds commercial versions are produced in Poland and Lithuania, but I don't find any recipes. I expect you'd use it as you would most pickles, as a condiment or accompaniment to meat or fish. It would think it'd be especially good with fish.
hello! I have a Russian friend and after a trip to Russia for a month I am happy to report that sorrel is actually an herb that grows wild in in the forest in Sochi. In Russia it's mostly used fresh put into green borsht (soup). It's actually high in antioxidants, high in vitamin C and very good for you. The commercial version is salty and tangy because it's pickled and probably few nutrients remain after such processing to preserve it. Green borsht is delicious and can be made with a chicken or vegatable stock. The Russians also add the tops of wild nettle plants (but pick with gloves on!) to the green borsht.
I highly recommend a hot bowl in winter or in summer a cold summer soup can be enjoyed too.
The reason I grow it is that my wife is Russian and introduced me to it. It's wonderful fresh in salads and, as you say, is used both raw and cooked in soups. You'll never see fresh sorrel in stores though - except, on rare occasions, in farmers' markets - because it wilts almost immediately after being picked. It really needs to go direct from garden to table.
It's a perennial so once planted it provides a supply for years. There is also a wild version of it that's common in New England - as kids we called it sourgrass, but it's formally known as sheep sorrel. Tasty stuff but much smaller than true sorrel (2" - 3" tall plants as opposed to 2').
For friends not familiar with it I just say it's like lemon-flavored lettuce.
I used to pick and eat the wild sorrel, "sourgrass" good for salads and in potato soups. I've seen the pickled stuff in jars in the Polish neighborhood of Greenpoint in Brooklyn, and on restaurant menus there, but I've never tried it in any of the Polish dishes. Now I guess I'll give it a go.
I jar sorrel
1 pork hock
10 baby potatoes quartered
2 fried onions
1 finely chopped garlic head
Slat and pepper
Juice of one lemon
Boil it all and make soup.
Serve with a dollop of sour cream.