If You Leave Your Purse Layin’ Around It’s Gonna Get Snatched

July 2nd, 2011 | Posted by Alison Spath in Vegetable Lovin'

This is purslane.

Most people would call purslane a weed.  Fewer people know that you can eat it. The internet tells me that purslane is really good for you, so it must be true.

I was 14 when I was hired by my grandfather as a professional weed puller and lawn mower.  “Professional”, because I was paid $2.50 an hour for my mad weed pullin’ skillz.

(I just realized those two items are in my current job description, except now I make $0.00 an hour.  Does that mean I’m back to amateur status?)

Purslane was the one weed I didn’t have to pull.  Grandaddy-o liked to eat purslane, so it was allowed to stay and I let it think it was a cool, happening plant hanging with the big boy tomato plants.

The fact is though, purslane is not at all a cool, happening plant.  No, purslane is actually a nerd plant.  It ranks highest in Alpha Lineolic Acid (ALA is one of the Omega-3 fatty acids) among it’s green leafy peers. It’s super high in vitamins A, C & E and is a great source of magnesium, riboflavin, beta-carotene, potassium and phosphorus.  It always sits in the front row in class and raises its hand to answer every question that is asked.

Around here, you see purslane all over the place.  It grows just about everywhere in the world, so chances are good you’ve seen it too. I spot it growing in the cracks of sidewalks, in flower beds and vegetables gardens too.

This is Purslane

I pretty much forgot about grandpa eating purslane until I spotted it in my garden this year.  (Talk about mama’s weeds.)

Oh riiiiiight – you’re that nerdy plant.  The one that’s so good for you.  Fine, you be my cheap and easy salad ingredient, I’ll let you hang out with my pepper plants and we’ll both pretend we’re cool.

There are a lot of ways you can prepare purslane – whatever you might do with any green leafy vegetable really.  Eat it raw, steam it, saute it, add to your stir fry, talk to it about your squirrel problems. It will totally listen without interrupting and really appreciates all the carbon dioxide you’re breathing down its neck. What an incredible symbiotic relationship you have with your purslane!

So if you’re gonna rip it up our your garden, flower bed or sidewalk crack, you might as well bring it in the house and rinse the dirt off it,

Purslane washed, rinsed and trimmed

then chop it up and throw it into the salad you’ve made.

Purslane in Salad

The salad you’ve made to serve along side your homemade veggie burger of course,

Purslane for Dinner

because the internet told you to.  And because you’re cool.  We’re all cool.

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14 Responses

  • rawkinmom says:

    Love it!!! I actually KNEW about purslane too!!! I have tried hiding it in my smoothies…..my kids will taste it once in a while…they love to eat wood sorrel and I swear I will make a lemonade out of it one day!!! LOL

  • Jane/you-know-who says:

    I remember being served this with a slightly warmed dressing and it became wilted to perfection.

  • I learn something new every day.

    And it’s only 7:39 in the morning, and I’ve already learned about purslane, which I never even knew existed! Must find some. Hopefully the local farmers market will surprise me with a bunch or two. 😀

  • Jennifer says:

    After reading your blog, I’ve noticed this everywhere this weekend, including my front yard. Who knew. :)

  • Cindy says:

    and now I get your title!


    jeez you kill me girl!

    I see that growin here and there! Now I need to go pick some!

    way to go!

  • holly says:

    the joy you bring to my life, oh how i love you + your blog so! and now i can also eat purslane. double win.

  • Maryanna says:

    I live in Rochester, NY; watched the Dr. Oz and Dr Roizen show with Oprah on Super Soul Sunday…The Longevity Show.

    Oz mentioned that in his native Turkey they eat purslane a lot.

    I’ve researched it and it’s high in oxalic acid that forms kidney stones. I’ve had them twice.

    I’d still like to try the purslane -once in a while for its other benefits, if I knew where to buy in Roch.

    It won’t be ready in the yards til May.
    I asked Bolton hydroponics and they don’t grow it, but have a lot of other great greens at the Roch. Public Market !

    • Hi Maryanna, I feel like I’ve seen at some of the summer markets in the summer… but mostly I pull it from my garden! I’m afraid I don’t know of anyone who sells is locally, I’ll come back and update this comment thread if I ever find someone who does.

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