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Armenian Stewed Nettles
for 4

1 1/2 tsp butter
1/2 lb lamb or beef bones
freshly ground black pepper
12 oz nettles (or any leafy spring greens; beet greens,
spinach, etc)
1/2 cup yogurt-garlic sauce (below)

Heat butter in a large skillet and add the bones. Cover & cook over
medium heat, turning occasionally, until well browned on all sides.
Add 1 cup water, 1/2 tsp pepper, and a pinch of salt, and simmer,
uncovered, 10 mins. There should only be about 1-2 Tb thick
intensely flavored meat juices left in the skillet. Discard the

Instead of the bones, use 1 cup degreased meat stock, boil down to
2 Tb. or use a reduced mushroom stock for a vegetarian dish.

Meanwhile, wash, stem, and drain the greens. Cook, covered, in a
saucepan until wilted, about 5 mins. (NOTE: hard, acrid greens
should be blanched awhile in plenty of boiling water.) Immediately
drain and refresh under cold running water. Squeeze dry & roughly
chop. Reheat the reduced juices. Add the greens and cook gently,
stirring, 5 mins. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pile the
greens onto a shallow serving dish, mound the yogurt sauce in the
center, and serve warm or at room temperature.

Yogurt-garlic sauce
makes 1 cup

16 oz plain, low-fat yogurt, drained to 1 cup (I use a coffee cone
with a filter - it should take 3 hours or more) about 1/4 cup water
1 or more cloves garlic, peeled pinch coarse salt

Place the drained yogurt in a shallow bowl. Use a fork to whisk in
the water gradually until creamy and smooth. Crush the garlic with
the salt and add to the yogurt, beating until smooth. If the sauce
is acrid, add a pinch of sugar. Let mellow at least 1 hour before


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