Noble Nettle Gruel

Gruel down the centuries gets a bad rap, courtesy of super snobs with their pretentious pontificating on what deems ‘good taste’. The phrase ‘food fascists’ comes to mind.

Shamelessly inspired by a recipe from the 1600s, I have adapted it for the modern noble peasant.

Food porn is great, and I’ll eat and have eaten and do eat at some of the finest dining tables in Christendom… but when you get home knackered after a day working, and simply don’t have four hours to show off your culinary expertise, then this “down to earth, home-cooked like grannie used to make it” recipe will hopefully be a breath of fresh air.

All hail the noble gruel…!!!

Nettle Gruel Recipe Ingredients

  • 200g nettle tops
  • 20g butter
  • 600ml nettle water
  • 200g unsmoked bacon lardons
  • 6tbsp medium oatmeal (not oat flakes)
  • salt & pepper

Nettle Gruel Recipe Instructions

  1. Wash the nettle tops, put in a saucepan and pour enough boiling water over them to cover them.
  2. Boil gently for 10 minutes, then strain and chop them up, reserving the nettle water for later.
  3. Gently fry the bacon lardons in butter, until browned.  Pour the fat over the chopped nettles and mash together.
  4. Put 600ml of nettle water in a pan and bring to a simmer then sprinkle in the oatmeal, and stir all the time until it thickens to the consistency of porridge which will take around 15-20 minutes.
  5. Next stir in the chopped nettles, and bacon lardons, and mix well, then season with salt and pepper.

Serves: 2

Further reading: Traditional and Modern Use of Stinging Nettle