Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Local Adaptogenic Power: Nettle/Եղինջ!

Spring in Yerevan is more exciting this year for a few reasons:

1- It is still snowing back home in Canada as my dad showed me through this picture of an eagle or hawk "munching" on a squirrel in our front yard:
2- Spring this year is on steroids and is therefore actually just summer in disguise (except at night).

3- GREENS! Glorious greens to get us all out of the winter-slump at prices that I still cannot believe. Spinach, beet greens, tarragon, and much more!

Today I will focus on one, and that is nettle, or եղինջ (yeghinch), which I learned about in our herbal medicine classes and happily discovered in Armenia about 2 years ago. It is commonly refereed to as a weed, but is, surprise surprise, very nutritious, which locals here seem to know very well! I have mostly seen delicious thick stews and soups made with it which I have not been able to mimic yet.

It is an adaptogen, which you can read more about here, and also high in iron. While I will continue to have my maca from Peru, it is great to know that there are local options for getting our adrenal glands some support! Bonus: it costs only 100 drams a bunch while it is in season, which is roughly around 25 cents.
Until I master making the soups I have tried, I prefer boiling a bunch of it and then letting it steep before draining the liquid into some bottles and then putting it into the fridge.
Since it is very warm in Yerevan now, I am not very tempted by tea, so I just drink it cold throughout the day. You can also mix it with different herbs and make a fusion tea, but for now, I am enjoying it solo!
Pro-tip: it is called stinging nettle for a reason! While not all types of nettle "sting", the one in Armenia does, so if you pick it be careful! Herb-picking post and tips coming up soon!


  1. After visiting your blog I am curious to know about Nettle drink, I will make this drink because it helpful for the nutrition point of view But I am little confused is the Nettle easily available at any corner if yes then let me know this detail. My uncle is planning to take the services of monorail in las vegas. Any suggestion would be much appreciated there.

    1. Hi Faikka! If it's in season, it should be easily accessible to you - you can ask some local shops or at farmer's markets in your area. If not I'm sure you can get the dried version from herbal shops. Good luck!

  2. Food is most important part of life to become healthy and during the travelling you do not compromise on food because you are outside the country or city or any other place but at that time i am in US and use GBt services for travel buses from new york to orlando florida..