Miner’s Lettuce

The other day I picked up a hitchhiker. As I was pulling out of his driveway a plant caught the corner of my eye. I jumped out and saw the sweetest little plant, one I’d only seen in books before, called miner’s lettuce (Claytonia perfoliata). This little gem is delicate, light and delicious. Its cup shaped, or saucer-like leaf shape with the flower stalk pushing right up through the middle, is a very unique characteristic. Leaves and stems are edible, and easy to harvest with a pair of scissors. Although it can be cooked any way you might use spinach, it doesn’t seem right to me to cook this one. This is a plant that’s meant to shove as much as you possibly can into your mouth and enjoy its raw goodness. Thanks to Hat John for letting me come back and mine his miner’s patch.

Above is acorn hummus on blue corn chips with miner’s lettuce leaf garnish. I have also been enjoying piling up the greens on tuna melts, in salads and in raw greens drinks. Below is the recipe for the acorn hummus. The acorns are used in place of the garbanzos/chickpeas usually found in this popular dip.

Acorn Hummus

1 c wet acorns
1/4 c olive oil
1 c tahini
3 pitted dates
2 cloves garlic
juice from 1/2 of a medium-sized lemon

Use processed acorns (tannins removed) that are wet. This means they have been rehydrated or boiled. Place one cup into blender, along with olive oil, tahini, dates, garlic, lemon juice and salt. Enjoy on sandwhiches, as a vegetable dip, with chips or any other way you might eat hummus. Get dippy!

6 replies
  1. Julie Arfsten
    Julie Arfsten says:

    Your articLe was so interesting. I noticed some weeds growing in our pastures and a neighbor toLd me it was miners Lettuce. When I came upon your site here I then knew for sure our pLants were indeed miners Lettuce. When I tried some boy was it good, so tender and deLicious. I even Like it more than the Lettuce you buy in the stores. So gLad I came upon your articLe here.

  2. sunny
    sunny says:

    Howdy folks!

    I had a gentleman write in to clarify the difference between hummus and hummus bit tahini. If you simply order hummus in a restaurant
    in the Near East, you are likely to get room temperature boiled
    chickpeas with lemon, salt & maybe olive oil and/or herbs….not with tahini as my recipe calls for, as that’s hummus bit tahini. So I guess in all actuality I should call my dip/spread ‘acorn bit tahini’.

    Thanks for writing in.
    cheers, ~sunny

  3. sunny
    sunny says:

    howdy RR.
    can’t help u out much…i would recommend contacting either native plant societies or native plant nurseries or online seed mail order places.

    good luck, ~sunny


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