Any of several plants of the genus Urtica, which have long, toothed leaves and myriad hairlike fibers that contain formic acid, which irritates the skin on contact. Urtica dioica is the nettle most commonly used culinarily. Nettles must be cooked to destroy their stinging effect, and only the young shoots and leaf tops are used.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.
Related Recipes From Food Network
- Stinging Nettle Tagliatelle with Frutti di Mare
- Stinging Nettle Tagliatelle with Hot Sausage, Kale and Pecorino
- Grilled Chicken Breast with Foraged Vegetables, Nettle Pesto, and Grilled Lightning Tree Farm Flatbread
- Roasted Rack of Silverton Lamb 'en Crepinette' with Oregon Hazelnuts, Morels and Wild Nettles with Organic Wheat Berry Pilaf