Call it lambsquarters, white goosefoot or pigweed.
We call it supper. Chenopodium album is one of the most common weeds in New England, and one of the most delicious. It tastes like spinach, only better.
It is a member of the Chenopodiaceae or goosefoot family, so it is related to quinoa, beets and spinach.
It is high in Vitamins A and C, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, manganese, potassium and iron.
Ancient people revered it, according to the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association. English writer Audrey Wynne Hatfield in How to Enjoy Your Weeds says that lambsquarters were “once the most valued vegetable for human beings and fodder for their animals.”
Lambsquarters must be cooked to reveal its incredible flavor. Raw, it is bland and its powdery leaf feels a little weird. Cook it as you would spinach. It’s great sauteed in olive oil with a little water or wine, plus salt. Add nettles to the pan for more flavor and nutrition.
Before eating any wild, foraged foods, be certain of what you have collected.