Steemit Iron Chef 2018 Act 02 #02: Spinach Wraps Wild Style - with Elm Leaves, Gingko Nuts, Cherries and More!

It's a spinach wrap, but the spinach is on the inside! Inside American Elm leaves -- with an assortment of foraged and homegrown plants. Tasty and free!

x spinach elm wrap TN.jpg

Getting It All Together!

The spinach is bolting with the longer days. So I'm glad @progressivechef chose it for the special ingredient this week and not a month from now! When I travel to Washington, DC, for work, I like to stop at Jaleo, a Spanish tapas restaurant. They have a small plate with a wonderful mix of spinach and pine nuts. Here's my Haphazard Homestead version -- wild style!

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Clockwise, from the upper left: My spinach is bolting! My Danube cherries got ripe this week. They are like a Morello cherry - sweet and tart at the same time. The White Clover is in full bloom. And Oregon's only native blackberry - the Trailing Blackberry - is just getting ripe. They are small, but pack a super-powerful punch of rich blackberry flavor.

In The Kitchen!

I also harvested some American Elm leaves. The big leaves of the American Elm are tough now, except for the new growth. It's still tender and tasty -- a mild greens flavor. And I raided my stash of Gingko nuts. I have other posts that go into more detail about Gingko trees and foraging their nuts. I've used them before in the Steemit Iron Chef contest -- they have a chestnut flavor and their consistency can be anywhere from chewy to crunchy, depending on how they are cooked. Here, I've got them right in the middle.

x spinach elm wrap 2.jpg
Top: American Elm leaves, Danube cherries, Trailing blackberries, White Clover petals, and cracked, uncooked Gingko nuts. Bottom: My wrap, before the wrap-up.

Back in the kitchen, I blanched the elm leaves and cut out the center vein from each one. I toasted the shelled gingko nuts in a cast iron skillet with a little coarse salt. I tossed with clover blossoms with a little salt as well, to heighten their light flavor. I braised the spinach in water, with a touch of Braggs seasoning - it's like a richer flavored soy sauce, I think.

I arranged the elm leaves and laid my ingredients on top. Then I wrapped my wrap!


x spinach elm wrap 3.jpg
I slice the ends off my wrap and served it in 3 slices. With an extra mound of the filling on the side because it is so delicious!

x spinach elm wrap 5.jpg
The greens flavor of the Elm leaves is different from the spinach - much more mild. I think it's a great contrast in taste and texture that highlights the spinach.

x spinach elm wrap 4.jpg
That filling is delicious! I wouldn't hesitate to serve this to anyone. And except for the salt and Dr. Braggs, it was all free!

What Do You Think?

  • Have you eaten Gingko nuts or Elm leaves?
  • Have you eaten wild blackberries?
  • Do you have any Gingko trees near you?
  • Would you eat my little spinach wraps?

I eat a lot of wild plants and show you how, because I believe that we can all have lives that are richer, more secure, more grounded, and more interesting by getting to know the plants and the land around us – in our yards, our parks, and our wild places.

Thanks @progressivechef for creating the Steemit Iron Chef contest series!

I try to make content that's interesting! If you found this informative and helpful, please give it an upvote and a resteem.

Plant List

  • American Elm - Ulmus americana - tender leaves
  • White clover - Trifolium repens - flower blossoms
  • Trailing Blackberry - Rubus ursinis - berries
  • Gingko - Gingko biloba - cooked nutmeats
  • Danube cherries!

Haphazard Homestead

foraging, gardening, nature, simple living close to the land

All content is 100% Haphazard Homestead!
My YouTube channel: Haphazard Homestead

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I would definitely eat your wraps. The plate looks so pretty:) Are your trailing berries the same as bramble berries? We have those here. They grow very close to the ground and a step above bush black berries in flavour and of course much harder to find. I did not know you could eat elm leaves. If I can find a tree away from traffic. I might give it a go. Never encountered ginkgo outside of the vitamin store. You are so clever, HH:)


Thanks, @prydefoltz! Yes, those are the same berries. They have long vines close to the ground that run a long ways. Some showed up a few years ago, on their own, under my Blue Spruce tree. Now they have a big patch that is spreading -- up into the tree, too! I'm glad you know their flavor -- it is more intense than the big Himalayan blackberries.

American Elm leaves are in my top 5 favorite tree leaves to eat. They are so much bigger than other kinds of elms and they stay tender for a longer time. I think because they put off so much shade. I'm fortunate to live near a giant one. In their native habitat back East, they are mostly gone from Dutch Elm disease.


That is a shame. I do hope they begin a replanting programe.

Oh hh! Those wraps look so very scrumptious! I've been known to snack on clover blossoms, and when I was little both of my grandparents lived in the woods of Southwest Washington, and we'd pick lots of wild blackberries, they are my favorite! But, I have never eaten elm leaves! I am super intrigued by the chestnut flavor part.:o) I so love how you fashion all manner of wild tapas looking creations my friend, makes me hungry!

That looks a very tasty dish. You should own your own cafe :)

I've been picking blackberries since I was a kid and picked them with my grandma. But elm leaves! I had no idea they were edible. I don't know of any ginko trees near by. I'll have to pay attention and look for one.


I figured you enjoyed blackberries, @melinda010100! You know and appreciate plenty of great wild edible plants! :D :D

American elm leaves are in my top 5 favorite tree leaves to eat. Their leaves are so much bigger than other elms -- totally worth picking some! I wonder if you have any left in your area, after the Dutch Elm disease. I hope the disease never makes its way here! The seeds from any of the Elms are good when they are green. So under-appreciated! Here's a post where I used Siberian Elm seeds to make a salad.

The gingko trees will be in an old part of town, most likely. They have to be 30-40 years old before they bear fruit. And then they have to be females, too. They are pretty cool trees. And the nutmeats are good, and not like any nuts we are used to.


I remember picking gallons of blackberries! Wish I could still get out and walk those fence rows!

Every street in town used to have a canopy of elms lining the streets. It was heartbreaking to lose them. You still see an occasional lone tree standing, but they are usually huge old specimens and their leaves are far out of reach.

I have seen ginko in my travels,. I.'ll be on the lookout.

Would I eat your wraps? YES to infinity. I am actually a bit sad that I can't reach through time space and eat them now.

There are no ginko trees near here as far as I know, and it doesn't get cold enough for cherries. There are elms around here though, that's something. Oh, and some kind of wild blackberry bush grows here also. (I have yet to eat their berries.)

Thanks for another phenomenal iron chef post, these are always a treat!

eid mubarak

Fabulous pictures of healthy and delicious food. Wow!

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very good idea to make such wraps. it's tasty and healthy, was not it?

I didn't even know that elm leaves are edible nor did I ever think about if they are or not! Sure! Why shouldn't they?! This is great! Of course would I eat your dish!! It is so beautiful and so creative! Congratulations! A winner entry by any definition!

Great combination! Most of them are my favorites; Danube cherries, The White Clover, and the Trailing Blackberry. Ah! I think the spinach is too green for me. ;D

These look like “Sushi” and I would love to try…. Good dish! ;)

This is divine. I just love all the goodness that is in it!

This looks so good. Never seen gingko nuts before. I bet they taste great.

Wow loved all the mixtures specially spinach with wild berries.... Great healthy meal with a twist

I just love spinach! I can eat it every day, I add it to all meals;) I never tried it like a wrap.. I will definitely try it!!

Awesome, let's visit my blog @alirezanatasya :)
If you like my blog, give me Vote back please, Thanks..

Oh I remember picking cherries for my uncle's tree and eating them till we almost made ourselves sick!

Sure I really would want to try your wraps!

You always make me hungry with your foraged foods. I haven't had Gingko, but wild black raspberries, wild blackberries (and wild salmon berries as long as we'r ein the family) yes!
And now, are you hungry for PUNS?
I think you would be an excellent nominator! Will you?

Oh my dear friend @haphazard-hstead ! What a chic recipe! I have spinach on the bed and cherries are also ripe. I will try to cook it!


Hello Friend! I miss your Vegetarian recipes and outdoor walks! You have not written for a long time ... Do you plan to go to Steem Fest?


This is absolutely marvelous my Dear............I would love ti try it 🌸💖🌸

Really luscious! The green is beautiful and I love the berries. Wonderful creation and the photos are excellent!

Such a beautiful composition - and it is super cool that you foraged all those ingredients 💚

Holy shit, this is amazing!

CHRIIIIIIIIIS!!! Where are you?! Are you ok? Im starting to worry here!

Hello, Well, my mouth is watering. I would like to sit with you next to the table and enjoy the food, full of sources of health and vitality .


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wow. delicious dish friend...
Party time...haha

Totally off-topic, but I've been watching through the entire history of the Edible Acres YouTube channel, and I happened to read through some comments and saw one from you. So this is me just waving across the internet. :-)

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