“A weed is only a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.”
--Ralph Waldo Emerson
This crop of lambsquarters was the first thing harvested from my kitchen garden – before any “real” vegetables were even planted.
Not only can lambsquarters be cooked like spinach, it’s related to spinach and beets and contains the same nutrients – calcium, iron, potassium and beta-carotene, along with vitamins B and C.
It branches like a tree, and can grow as tall as ten feet(!) I’ve never seen it that big – three feet is as much out of control as we’ve allowed around here. It’s best to harvest when the plants are young (and heck, you have to weed anyway, right?). The leaves are diamond-shaped and look like the base and back of the leaves have been dusted with a fine white powder.
Sometimes the plant is called “goosefoot”, and there is actually a cultivated version called Magentaspreen which has a pink hue
Add lambsquarters to salads, lentil soup, quiche or any other dish normally incorporating spinach, chard or beet greens.