It’s time to harvest the dock seeds! They are all over! Look at those lovely orange seed stocks! Be quiet. Shh…. Do you hear them rustle in the wind?
Dock seeds are rich in calcium and fiber. According to Sergei Boutenko, the author of Wild Edibles, dock seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Most American diets are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 deficiency is easy to spot and can manifest as dry bumpy skin, brittle nails, dull hair, etc. It can lead to sleeping problems, depression, mood swings and attention problems. Isn’t it exciting to know we might help resolve that with a “weed”? Something that may be growing in your backyard?
Here are the lovely dock seeds, that repopulate like wildfire. Plants can get to around 3-5 feet tall. Dock leaves ruffle at edges (and are edible but tastier in spring). Each stalk can have hundreds of seeds! Better for making lots of crackers!
Do you want to hear a story about dock? When we first moved into our house, I was determined not to lay waste to my lawn with chemicals. It was natural or nothing. Vinegar hardly killed weeds so I moved on to pulling weeds as my cardio. Dock, in my case yellow dock, has the longest, most stubborn root that I know. I once pulled a five-inch plant with a three foot root! And it did not come freely. That means the root was over seven times longer than the plant! Goodness gracious, why don’t we appreciate weeds more? A couple summers ago, I was struggling to pull a particular stubborn dock root. And I grunted through gritted teeth, “I wish these plants had a purpose!”
They do say be careful what you wish for…
It was not too long afterwards that we were playing our family’s foraging version of Go Fish with Sergei Boutenko’s Wild Edibles card deck. I came across a familar looking plant with ruffle-edged leaves and seedy stalks. There it was! Dock! It did have a purpose. I think right then and there, I went and gathered a few leaves for a smoothie. But I learned something even more important, that the weeds I was pulling and my neighbors were killing with chemicals, had more to offer. Dock is resilient. Vigorous. Its roots reach deep into the earth for nutrients. It was a scrapper with untapped potential and I was just breaching knowledge of its usefulness.
And reaffirming that just because the world does it, doesn’t make it right (or healthy). I admit that amidst my struggle to pull those long-reaching roots, I had envied my neighbors’ immaculate green yards. The yard may be greener on the other side of the fence, but it’s not always healthier or tastier…
I call these Weed Seed Crackers the “Peace makers” for many reasons. The main reason is because they have made me at peace with the decision to have a natural backyard. It may be crazy, wild, savage even but above all, it is peace-making in our home.
I styled this crackers after the life changing crackers from My New Roots. I cut the list of ingredients in half, finding a simple combination of dock seeds, oats, and flax make a substantial and delicious cracker. The cracker batter sticks together because of the flax and the psyllium husk. Psyllium husk is a wonderful binding agent. Psyllium husk comes from the plantain plant (more future foraging ventures). It will also firm up your poop… so there’s that. I used Organic India’s Whole Husk Psyllium from amazon (aff link). It is organic and great quality.
Some may ask, why use dock seeds? You certainly don’t have to! You can substitute with another seed if you life! But my question to you is if you have dock or you know dock, why not? It’s a free source of food. It’s nutritious and delicious in cracker form.
… As always, forage safely. Get to know a wild edible and study it. Examine field guides. I suggest Sergei’s Wild Edibles. Google recipes (there is a whole online nation out there of food foragers waiting to share)! And don’t eat something if you don’t know what it is!
Weed Seed Peace-making Crackers
1 cup dock seeds
2 cups oats
1/2 cup flax seeds
1/4 cup whole husk psyllium
1 ½ tsp sea salt
1 TB maple syrup
3 TB coconut oil, melted
1 ½ cup water
Handful of fresh herbs, chopped*
- Grind flaxseeds.
- Combine dry ingredients in bowl.
- Stir in wet ingredients.
- Let sit for atleast 2-3 hours to allow seeds to absorb moisture and grains to stick together.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir in chopped herbs.
- Lay parchment paper on large baking tray. Firmly press cracker batter on to parchment paper. Lay another piece of parchment paper on top then roll out batter (the parchment paper on top of batter makes sure it doesn’t stick to rolling pin.*Score before baking if you want more uniform shaped crackers
- Once pressed out to fill baking tray, bake 20 minutes. Flip then bake 10 more minutes.
- Let cool (if you have wonderful self control) then break into sections.
*I used fresh sage, oregano and thyme. Rosemary also makes a lovely addition. Different herbs lend different flavors. Experiment if you like!
STAY TUNED! I’ll be sharing a honey graham version of this cracker soon!