[NAFEX] lemon juice substitute - Rumex spp.

Hilborn.E at epamail.epa.gov Hilborn.E at epamail.epa.gov
Mon Dec 1 10:21:25 EST 2008

"My grandmother was born in Indian territory (Oklahoma) in 1895.  In her
journal, she wrote about making sorrel pie as a substitute for lemon
pie.  Sorrel or dock (Rumex sp.) is a sour, lemony green that imparts a
lemon flavor to savory dishes.  I've never used it in a sweet dish, but
there is a precedent for it. "

There are multiple Rumex spp.   They all are relatively high in nitrates
and oxalic acid.  Some unacceptably so.  Rumex crispus is associated
with a documented fatal poisoning episode.  Rumex acetosa has lower
levels, but it is not a food to feast upon.  Maybe using it for a lemony
flavoring only requires a small amount....

Betsy Hilborn
 7a NC

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