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Edible Onion Weed Info and Recipes

A pest and invasive weed too many this is my favourite edible ‘weed’. At the moment onion weed has turned the damp banks of our garden into an edible lawn!

Cooking with onion weed is the highlight of spring in The Veggie Tree kitchen, we literally have it every day in some form or other, it is my absolute favourite wild herb. A foragers delight, with its juicy stalks and pretty little white flowers they are a perfect alternative to chives and spring onions with its delicate onion flavour. The entire plant is edible including the bulbs that can be harvested in late summer. Use the flowers to garnish salads, egg dishes, soups, dips, they work perfectly in place of spring onions in

Asian style dishes, they pretty much make anything look impressive!

They have triangular stalks and smell like onions, don’t confuse them with snow drops. The entire plant is edible including the bulbs that can be harvested in late summer. So go out & enjoy this free gift from Papatuanuku and instead of fighting it eat it up! Plus when it does flower, if you are eating the flowers then they won’t spread so much!

In this video I'll show you four of my favourite recipes and share some valuable hints and tips when it comes to preparing and preserving their fabulous flavour including how to make the most of this abundant wild edible using it from the bulb to the flowers.

In this video we start with Onion Weed Mayo to dress an Onion Weed, Potato, Kumara and Crispy Chickpeas and Capers Salad. Next up is Onion Weed Kawakawa and Kelp Super Salt and lastly Tempura Onion Weed or make them into Batter Fritters (recipes to follow)

I hope this video inspires you to make the most of these fabulous free super food and make sure you tag @theveggietree if you make any of the recipes, I love to see folks enjoying them as much as we do!

Onion Weed Nutritional Information and Health Benefits

The super food allium family has many benefits to enjoy including being a prebiotic which provide food for friendly bacteria in the large intestine. Alliums also enhance the bioavailability of iron and zinc when you eat them foods with these nutrients in them, how awesome is that for a pesky weed! They help with memory and Alzheimer’s due to the high levels of lutein and folate. Helps reduce blood cholesterol levels, stimulates the circulatory blood system and is antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. Plus it contains chlorophyll, fibre, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.


To follow is my recipe for Tempura Onion Weed Flowers and you can also use the same batter to make delicious Onion Weed Fritters if you don't want to get the deep fryer out.

Tempura Onion Weed Flowers Recipe

This recipe is for Tempura Onion flowers which are crispy, moorish and a wonderful addition to your Friday night chip night, as an appetiser, snack or side dish. If you don’t have a deep fryer, use a large wok or saucepan and a thermometer to ensure the oil doesn’t get too hot. Once the oil has cooled down, strain it through a sieve into a jar or container and use again.

Vegan | Gluten-free

Serves 4-6

Gather a couple of big handfuls of onion flowers with stems and measure the following into a large bowl:

1 cup (125g) plain flour 1/2 cup (65g) cornflour or 1 3/4 cup (200g) gluten-free flour mix

1/2 tsp salt 1/4 tsp black pepper

Whisk in:

250ml soda water, ice cold

Don’t whisk too much, it can be a little lumpy, leave it to rest while you heat your oil. Into your deep-fryer or large wok, pour:

1 L rice bran oil

Heat the oil to 180ºC, to test the heat if you don't have a thermometer drop a little batter into the oil and if if bubbles and rises to the surface it is hot enough to begin. Holding each flower by the stem, dip the into the batter wiping off any excess on the side of the bowl before placing them carefully into the hot oil. Alternatively grab a little handful of three flower heads, stems removed, and plunge then into the batter, pull them out as one mass and hold over the bowl to allow the excess batter to drip off, then place it into the oil. Flip over to ensure even cooking. When light a golden colour, remove with a slotted spoon or frying spider and drain on a rack with a tray underneath. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve as a appetiser with Sweet Chilli Sauce & Avocado Mayo or the Onion Weed Mayo from my Onion Weed Potato Salad

Onion Weed Fritters Recipe

Alternatively to making the Tempura Onion Weed Flowers, you can chop up a big bunch of onion flowers and stems and stir through the batter and shallow fry as you would a fritter, they turn out like delicious

little fluffy clouds.

Vegan | Gluten-free

Serves 4-6

Gather your ingredients and measure the following into a large bowl:

1 cup (125g) plain flour 1/2 cups (65g) cornflour or 1 3/4 c (200g) gluten-free flour mix 1/2 tsp salt 1/4 tsp black pepper

Whisk in:

300ml soda water, ice cold

Mix in:

2 cups onion weed flowers, roughly chopped

1/4 cups parmesan, dairy or alternative

300g tofu, mashed (optional)

Add these along with the chopped onion weed after you have made the batter and fry in batches of 5 - 6 fritters. In a cast iron pan on a medium high heat per batch:

2 tablespoons rice bran or coconut oil

1/4 tsp sesame oil

Fry until golden on either side and remove from the heat to a cooling rack and repeat until all the mixture is finished. Serve with Sweet Chilli Sauce & Avocado Mayo or the Onion Weed Mayo from my Onion Weed Potato Salad

Potato, Kumara, Crispy Chickpea and Capers Salad

with Onion Weed Dressing

In this Potato, Kumara, Crispy Chickpeas, Capers & Onion Weed Salad with Onion Weed Dressing, I've utilised the whole onion weed from bulb to tip, and I hope to inspire you guys to get into these abundant amazing weeds! Aquafaba is the liquid from cooking chickpeas or other white beans. The protein present in this liquid acts like an egg. You could also use the whites of spring onions in this recipe. Peruperu or Maori potatoes are ideal for potato salad recipes as they are a waxy variety. They have a higher water content and lower in starch so have a dense texture and retain their shape during cooking. Other waxy potato variety's are Nadine, Jersey Benni or Red King Edward.

Vegan | Gluten-free

Serves 4-6


Measure the following into a mini food processor:

10 onion weed bulbs and white parts, roughly chopped

60ml aquafaba

1 tablespoon mustard

1 tsp sugar or honey

Blitz together then slowly at intervals add:

150 ml extra virgin olive oil

Blitzing well between additions. When it's emulsified add:

Zest and juice of one lemon

2 tsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp salt

pinch of black pepper

Blitz together well.



3-4 kumara

3-4 potatoes, peruperu or waxy type potato are preferable

Cut into bite sized pieces and steam until cooked, then cool before using

Drain well and pat dry:

1/4 cup capers

1 1/2 cup chickpeas

Fry in:

1/2 cup rice bran oil

Until crispy, remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel.

Prepare and add to the salad bowl:

1 celery stick, finely sliced

1 fennel bulb, finely sliced

1/4 cup daikon or radish, finely sliced

Juice of half a lemon

1/2 tsp salt

pinch of black pepper

Mix together and leave to marinate for a couple minutes while you slice the rest of the onion weed stems and flowers, then add to the bowl with all of the other prepared ingredients from above, liberally drizzle over the dressing, toss together well and serve.

Onion Weed, Kawakawa and Kelp Super Salt

This nutrient dense super salt so delicious and nutritious you'll want to put it on everything!

I forage for seaweed and kawakawa when the opportunity presents itself, so already have these ready to go, but you can also buy seaweed, kelp or wakame readily in stores. Kawakawa is pretty abundant if you take a walk in the bush anywhere in New Zealand. An alternative could be rosemary or other native pepper bushes in different parts of the world. In the spring time there are only two methods for drying, either in a dehydrator or in a very low oven and once you have dehydrated any of these ingredients they will keep in a jar for over a year, so you can have it on hand to make another batch anytime! To follow from this recipe are foraging notes, pictures and health and medicinal benefits of kawakawa and kelp.

Super Salt Recipe

Vegan | Gluten-free

Makes 1 cup (200g)

Gather your ingredients and pre-heat oven to 50-60°C and line a perforated tray (if using this method), otherwise get your dehydrator set up. Prepare the following and spread out in a single layer:

1 cup onion weed stems and leaves, sliced into 5mm slices

8-10 kawakawa leaves

2 hand sized pieces of kelp or seaweed

Dry until crispy to touch, it will take from 2 to 4 hours depending on whether you use an oven, dehydrator and what kind you have. Grind in batches in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle with:

1/2 cup rock salt

Grind to the to the consistency you prefer and store in a jar with the lid secure. It will last indefinitely. Enjoy this salt on everything! It also makes a fantastic stock substitute.

Kawakawa Nutritional Information and Health Benefits

One of my favourite versatile native plants is kawakawa, it has a delicious deep pepper flavour as it from the pepper family (same as the peppercorn). I love to use it in herbal salt blends, added to immune boosting broths, tonics, smoothies, as a tea or infused into oils for skin care and joint pain.

In Maori rongoa medicine the Kawakawa leaves were chewed for toothache it was also used externally to treat boils, eczema and rheumatism. It has cleansing properties which may help support skin problems such as boils and acne. It has anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties for using as a skin oil or balm. Kawakawa promotes a healthy urinary system and is used for a healthy digestive system and stomach ailments, its bitter and stimulating properties makes it excellent for constipation and it is used to support IBS, cramping, bloating and indigestion.

It is important to note that in Rongoa Maori best practise is to karakia before harvesting medicinal plants like kawakawa. Out of respect to Papatuanuku, mother earth and all the plants she grows for not only us, but all the creatures, and nature itself, it is important to give thanks and ask before taking, only taking what you need and leaving the new leaves to grow so the plant will live on.

Kelp and Brown Seaweeds Nutritional Information

and Health Benefits

The clean waters around New Zealand contain plenty of vitamins, minerals, proteins and essential enzymes, which the kelp absorbs as it grows, and once consumed, can be absorbed by the human digestive system. I love to utilise seaweeds in the kitchen. I add a couple of dried pieces to pretty much all stocks or broths I make and this salt goes on pretty much everything else!

Kelp and brown seaweeds such as bladder kelp or common kelp (ecklonia radiata) are often referred to as a superfood due to their significant vitamin and mineral content. Brown seaweeds have a high iodine content, which maintain optimal thyroid and pituitary gland function – glands that control your hormones, body temperature and metabolism. It is a natural source of vitamins A, B1, B2, C, D and E, as well as minerals including zinc, magnesium, iron, potassium, copper and calcium. In fact it contains the highest natural concentration of calcium of any food, even milk. In the summertime I rinse well in salt water at the beach then dry them on the washing line until crispy then store in jars (with lids on) in my pantry.

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