Wild Greens Wraps (Tortillas)
I have a confession to make: I love weeds. Sometimes dandelions pop up in my raised beds, and I won’t pull them for a full year because I want the root to become nice and plump before I “harvest” that dandelion. I recently heard myself complain to a fellow gardener that I don’t have enough lambsquarters popping up in the garden this year. Weedy greens are some of my favorite foods. It’s partly because they’re so nutritious, partly because I enjoy their diverse flavors, and partly because they give me a deep feeling of peace and security. I know these plants will be there for me even in years when my garden doesn’t thrive, when disease ravages my delicate cultivars, when water drowns out my heat loving plants, or when drought reduces my garden size down to what I can water by hand. These weedy plants are my vitamin pills, my insurance, and my main course all rolled into one. I absolutely love them.
This year, I’m running behind on everything. I’m still trying to catch up from last year’s overextended frenzy, and I didn’t get my garden prep work done during the off season like I usually do. So I’m weeding each bed as I plant, preparing the soil right before the garden plants go in. I pull way more edible weeds every day than what I can eat for dinner, so I got to thinking about ways I could preserve them for later use. There’s always freezing, but my freezer space is limited. I could make green powder, but I still have some of that leftover from last summer. I could make pesto, and believe me I have, but I need to save some olive oil for basil season. The perfect solution came to me in the form of my favorite summer lunch: the sandwich wrap.
This recipe solves several different problems for me. Not only does it allow me to use up all the extra greens I’m pulling out of the garden, but it replaces something I normally have to purchase (tortilla wraps), and gives me a much more nutritious alternative to the wrap options available at my local grocery store. These wraps are raw, gluten free, paleo, nutrient dense, and vegan. Last but not least, they’re delicious!
Wild Greens Raw Wrap Recipe
(Makes Two or Three Wraps)
This recipe uses a dehydrator and a blender. If you don’t have a dehydrator, I think you could use your oven on the lowest heat setting (and reduce the cooking time). Or maybe you could sun dry them on a hot day! If you don’t have a blender, a food processor might work. Use your creativity, but you’ll definitely need some way of liquefying the veggies and some way of setting the slurry into wrap form.
Note: This article discusses edible and medicinal wild plants. Always do your own thorough research before touching, foraging or ingesting any plant that’s new to you. Identification mistakes can happen and so can allergies, interactions, and idiosyncratic reactions. Information presented in this article and elsewhere on this web site is for educational and entertainment purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any health conditions. View our full legal disclaimer here.
4-5 Cups Mixed Edible Greens
Use any kind of greens that you have available and that you feel comfortable eating. I used a blend of lambsquarters, dandelion greens, violet leaves, plantain leaves, fresh basil, and chive blossoms. When working with wild greens, I do suggest blending more than one kind together. If I made this entirely out of dandelion greens, it would probably taste very bitter. If I made it entirely of lambsquarters, it would probably taste too earthy. This recipe also works great with not-so-wild greens like spinach and kale. If you don’t feel comfortable with your foraging skills, it’s best to err on the side of caution until you’ve studied enough do so safely and confidently.
1 Apple, Cored and Roughly Chopped.
I prefer red apples in this recipe. A touch of sweetness is a nice counter-balance to the other bold green flavors.
2 Cloves Garlic, Peeled
1 TB Psyllium Husk Powder
Psyllium Husk Powder is made from the seed of the plantain plant (Plantago ovata). Psyllium is very rich in fiber, and it is commonly used as a digestive health supplement. Psyllium husk powder is the active ingredient in this recipe. I tried many versions of this recipe using flax seed or other substitutes, and it never worked. Psyllium husk powder will make all the other ingredients gel together and actually form a tortilla wrap. As long as you have psyllium husk powder, you can totally freestyle this recipe. You can make carrot wraps, tomato wraps, onion wraps, or anything else you can imagine!
A Pinch of Salt (Optional)
Enough Water To Blend
I used about one cup. You can use more if your blender gets stuck, but your wraps will take a little longer to dry.
1. Add water, garlic, and apple to your blender. Blend until smooth.
2. Add one big handful of greens to the blender and blend again until all ingredients are well combined.
3. Continue adding one handful of greens at a time until all the greens are thoroughly blended together in a smooth slurry.
4. Add psyllium husk powder to the blender and blend one more time to mix thoroughly.
5. Prepare three dehydrator trays as you would for fruit leather. The tray needs to have a solid bottom for this recipe and a nonstick surface. I use silicone inserts like these but I don’t know that they are any better than any other kind of insert. Many people prefer to line their trays with teflon sheets to make their wraps easier to flip, but I don’t like teflon so I just rub a little olive oil into my silicone liners and I haven’t had trouble flipping my wraps.
6. Pour about 1/3 of your batter onto a greased or lined fruit leather tray. Use your hands to smooth out the batter into a tortilla shape and size about 1/4″ thick. A slightly thicker tortilla will be easier to handle, but it will take longer to dry and you won’t get as many wraps out of the same amount of batter. A slightly thinner tortilla may develop a hole as it dries. If you really want to make thin wraps, I suggest reserving a small amount of batter so you can use it to patch any holes that develop at flipping time.
7. Repeat until you have used all your batter. Optionally, load up your dehydrator with other things that can be dehydrated at the same temperature (or more tortilla wraps) so that it’s totally full when you run it. I like to get the most out of the electricity I’m using.
8. Dehydrate at 130 degrees F for about two hours. After two hours, check on your wraps. If they seem dry on top (even in the middle), lift up on the edge and see if they hold together when moved and are solid enough to be flipped. If they need more time, give them another hour or so, then check again.
9. Flip the wraps midway through their dry time so that they dry evenly and remain flexible. When your wrap is solid enough to withstand flipping, get another fruit leather tray ready (or a sheet of parchment paper) and lay it on top of your wrap. Flip the whole thing over in one motion, then peel the original fruit leather tray away from the top of the tortilla wrap so that the bottom side is now facing up. Place the wrap back in the dehydrator and dry for another two hours.
If you don’t have time to monitor the drying process, or you forget to flip, that’s okay. You can let the wraps dry all the way down on one side until the whole wrap is hard. Then, let it sit out in the ambient humidity overnight. As long as you don’t live in a super dry air place, the wraps will rehydrate themselves from the ambient humidity until they are soft and pliable again. If you do live in a dry climate, you might be able to achieve similar results by placing your wraps in a sealed container with a moist paper towel inside.
10. When your wraps are cohesive, sturdy, yet still pliable, you can use a pair of kitchen scissors to trip away the curly edges to make them look beautiful. Or, if you don’t have time to trim them up, you can use them as-is! They’ll still taste just as delicious and they’ll still contain all the good fillings you enjoy in your wraps.
These wraps are dry, but they’re not totally crunchy dry. You definitely want to seal them up in an airtight container to prevent them from rehydrating. They will have some shelf life if you store them at room temperature (I haven’t noticed any spoilage after a few days) but if you want to keep them longer, place them in the refrigerator for medium-term storage, or the freezer for long-term storage.
Stuff these with your favorite sandwich wrap fillings, roll them up, and enjoy. They work pretty much just like any other tortilla wrap! One thing to note is that you want to stuff these soon before serving. I wouldn’t fill a wrap and then pack it in my lunch box to consume several hours later (if the wrap soaks up too much moisture, it will get even more soggy than regular wraps). However, the same thing pretty much happens to any kind of wrap. The best thing is to prepare your filling and pack it separately from your wrap.
I highly recommend my Microgreens Bruschetta as a filling for these wraps! Other delicious fillings include:
- Hummus with matchstick carrots, baby greens, and mustard
- Guacamole with cucumbers, matchstick carrots, and shaved radish roots
- Vegan nut cheese with matchstick carrots, radish microgreens, and mustard (pictured)
- Your favorite taco fillings
- Leftovers from whatever yesterday’s dinner was 🙂
Serve alongside your favorite iced herbal sun tea, fresh pressed juice, or smoothie. The beverage pictured is fresh watermelon-lime juice with a violet salt rim and a spearmint garnish.
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! I think this is going to be one of my favorite ways to preserve all kinds of garden harvests this summer. I’m dreaming up a whole rainbow of wraps made throughout the summer to brighten up my lunches year-round. Let your creativity run wild with this technique, and come back to tell me all about the wraps you make!