Although most Americans think of the low growing purslane as a weed it is actually used and sold as a vegetable in other parts of the world. The thick juicy leaves are great raw in salads, steamed or added to a stir-fry. Combined with any vinegar-based salad dressing and chilled for a couple of days they also turn into a sort of pickled purslane. Below is a recipe for a purslane salsa I make every year when the purslane is up and growing in my yard.

Purslane Salsa

2-3 cups purslane leaves and small stems, broken or cut into bite-sized pieces

½ c. chopped sweet onion

½ c. chopped sweet pepper

½ c. cider vinegar

½ c. oil

¼ c. chopped cilantro

Salt and hot pepper sauce to taste

Wash purslane and place in a medium bowl. Add vegetables and stir. Combine vinegar, oil and seasonings in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well. Pour over purslane mixture and mix well. Cover and chill. Serve with tortilla chips.

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