Vegetables are not usually the first thing that come to mind when one thinks of Mexican food, however there is actually a pretty wide range of produce that is used. Purslane or in Spanish, verdolagas, is an example of a vegetable that is commonly found in markets and stands and used frequently in cooking.
The most well-known Mexican recipe with purslane is prepared with ribs in a tomatillo sauce. It is an amazing meal which I highly recommend trying, however the recipe that I’m going to share in this post is a simple recipe to prepare steamed purslane using a little bit of chicken broth and garlic. I think that this vegetable is so tasty that it can be made without too many ingredients.
In the United States this plant has generally been considered a weed and therefore is not frequently used in cooking. However, because of the continually growing Mexican population purslane can easily be found in Mexican grocery stores. When looking for this leafy green you may have to ask for verdolagas as I haven’t gotten the sense that most people are familiar with the word purslane.
This dish can be eaten by itself or in tacos with crumbled fresh cheese and avocado or mixed with beans. While the recipe only calls for chicken broth and garlic I frequently add leftover salsas that I have in the fridge or add chopped tomato – the point is that you can play around with the ingredients you use.
My personal preference when preparing this dish is to serve it with lots of broth. You will notice that in the recipe I give you the option of using between ½ to 1 ½ cups of chicken broth depending on your preferences.
- 2 lbs. of purslane
- 3 cloves of garlic
- ½ – 11/2 cups of chicken broth
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
Cut off the the roots and wash well to make sure all the dirt is removed. Chop garlic finely. In a deep pot heat olive oil and add garlic. When starting to brown add the purslane and the chicken broth. Cover the pot and cook on medium to low heat for about 30 minutes or until the stems are tender. Add salt and pepper.
This dish can be served as a side, prepared with eggs or as tacos with cheese and avocado and/or mixed with beans.