Find your fields of gold

Nettle and Wild Garlic Soup

You will need:
• 1 large bunch of nettles
• A handful of wild garlic leaves
• 1 medium onion, finely chopped
• 2 cloves of garlic, minced
• 1 large potato, peeled and diced
• Vegetable or chicken broth
• Salt and pepper to taste
• Lincolnshire rapeseed oil for sautéing

Method:
• Gather fresh nettles and wild garlic leaves from local hedgerows or woodlands.
• Rinse the nettles thoroughly and remove any tough stems. Chop the wild garlic leaves.
• In a large pot, sauté the chopped onion and minced garlic in olive oil until translucent.
• Add the diced potato, nettles and wild garlic leaves. Pour in enough broth to cover the
ingredients.
• Let the soup simmer until the potatoes are tender.
• Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth.
• Season with salt and pepper to taste.
• Ladle into bowls and drizzle with a little rapeseed oil.
• Enjoy the earthy flavours of foraged greens!


Words by:
Nikki Bawn
Featured in:
May 2024

Nikki Bawn of Boggle Lane Foods highlights a haven for wildlife and thriving ecosystem within the county’s open farmland.

As the days lengthen, discover where Lincolnshire’s history and nature converges. The countryside comes alive in May and among the most striking hues is the brilliant yellow of rapeseed. These fields, like sunlit canvases, stretch as far as the eye can see and welcome the season with open arms, but beyond their visual appeal lies a deeper significance.

These fields sustain a delicate balance of life, providing sustenance for both humans and wildlife. Yellow rapeseed might steal the show, but woven into this crop you’ll find grains, potatoes and sugar beet thriving amongst the golden blooms.

Rapeseed is a beacon for pollinators. Bees, butterflies and hoverflies flit from flower to flower, ensuring the cycle of life continues.

The open fields, thick hedgerows and chalk streams that meander through the landscape all create a haven for wildlife. You can find furry friends like water voles, ground-nesting birds, who find refuge amidst the grasses, and fascinating insects who dance in the warm breeze. These fields are not just cultivated plots, they are thriving ecosystems.

Beyond the superficially regimented rows of crops lies a rich tapestry of history. Lincolnshire’s agricultural heritage is etched into the land itself, waiting to be deciphered by those who pause to explore. Neolithic long barrows, medieval village earthworks, and post-medieval farmsteads are there to be discovered.

Each furrow tells a story—a tale of toil, seasons and sustenance. The regimented beauty of ploughed fields conceals these treasures, waiting for curious eyes to uncover them.

Step back in time
Springs and wells dot the landscape too, connecting our present to a distant past. Some were discovered as long ago as 43AD by the Romans and their water is still quenching thirsts today.

Lincolnshire wears its history proudly, and age-old traditions bind us to the land, reminding us that history lives not only in books but also in the rhythm of the seasons.

Maypole dancing weaves ribbons around the ancient maypole, celebrating fertility and the union of earth and sky. On Beltane Eve, bonfires blaze, symbolising protection and fertility.

Delve a little further and with every step a new chapter in the story of Lincolnshire’s rich heritage is revealed.

Gather some of the wild and celebrate the season with a recipe that embraces foraged ingredients found in May. One simple dish has been enjoyed through the ages and is a delicious way to connect to the land and its history.

Whether you’re exploring Lincolnshire’s fields or simmering a pot of nettle soup, May invites you to savour the season and the echoes of centuries past. So, put on your walking shoes, breathe in the fresh air, and let your own wild story unfold.

For more information on foraging email: nikki@bogglelane.co.uk



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