Agretti, the Sexy Wild Weed of Springtime

May 07, 2022 210

BY: Viviana Devoto

If you blink, this popular Italian vegetable will already be gone. Even though the growing season for agretti is less than a month long, the plant leaves behind flavors and memories that linger forever. Agretti—one of the most mouth-watering, bitter spring veggies—has always been extremely desirable in the Lazio and Umbria regions of Italy, but now it’s gaining popularity all over the world, wherever weather permits.

Apparently, Northern California gets just the right amount of ocean breeze to grow agretti properly. Also known as Barba di Frate (or “monk’s beard”), the plant’s Latin name is Salsola soda. Agretti stems look like needles, and they’re normally cooked ripassati, sautéed with oil and lemon.

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