Who here has ever eaten poke salad (sallet)? I used to hear tales about it from my mom and my husband’s granny, yet as far as I know, I’ve never eaten it myself. I asked them what does it taste like, to which they replied, “kind of like turnip greens.” Well, I’ve never been a huge fan of those either, but I’d come closer to eating them than poke salad. The articles I read says it comes closer to tasting like asparagus.
I did some research on it, finding that the preparation to make it edible is so tedious and time consuming, I would not bother. Yet back in the old days, it’s healing properties made it very popular among Southerners who did not mind the arduous prep. It has to be boiled three times to remove the toxins, because the roots and berries of the pokeweed are poisonous. Onions and bacon are added and the resulting “salad” is supposedly delicious, a real delicacy according to legend.
Another article I read said that the benefits of eating the Jekyll and Hyde plant, as it was known, are many! Everything from treating skin diseases to alleviating joint pain. Supposedly it cures everything from HIV to Cancer, yet there has been no science to back that up. Maybe there should be?? If something natural could do all that, why hasn’t someone already capitalized on it?
There was even a song dedicated to the much desired weed, released in 1968 called “Polk Salad Annie” by Tony Joe White…I have heard it many times.
What are your stories about this weed? Have you ever tried it?
If you’d like to read more, check out this article on Pokeweed: Benefits, Side Effects, and Preparations.