Sunday, June 16, 2013

Pork Chops with Caramelized Onion and Thistle

Thistle is growing abundantly around here, and since every part of it is edible, I wanted to experiment more.  My first attempt, Lemon Thistle Martini, was certainly a winner in my book.  The stems of the plant, once the prickles are removed, actually are similar to celery though the taste is more bland which is not unpleasant but crisp and clean.  It is really easy to remove the prickles with a glove and sharp knife.  Younger plants will have a more tender stem and that is what you should seek.  It can be used in salads or any way that you would use celery.

Scraping the Prickly Outer Layer Off the Stems

Thistle Stems

The leaves can also be used once the prickly edges are removed.  My leaves were not very large so the final result was mostly the central stem.

The final result of cleaning the leaves of their sharp edges:

Pork Chops with Caramelized Onion and Thistle

The flavor of thistle leaves reminds me of turnip greens, but sturdier.


6 pork chops
1 small onion, chopped
1 cup chopped thistle leaves with prickles removed
garlic salt


In a large frying pan, melt enough butter to fry the pork chops.  Add the pork chops.  In between the pork chops add the onion and thistle.  Sprinkle with garlic salt.  Fry until pork chops are browned and onion and thistle is caramelized.

I would definitely make this again.  The flavor was great!  However, the work involved in preparing the thistle leaves was too cumbersome for the meager amount that it produced.  A couple of nice things about thistle that I do like are that it is easy to identify and prolific in this area.  You would not starve if you are willing to put in the work!

No comments:

Post a Comment