I recently found myself wondering, "What is kritamo?" You, dear reader, may have the same question.
A. Wild rock fennel.
B. Briny, Grecian shoreline weed
C. Exclusive Whole Foods weed.
D. All of the above.
The kritamo is figure 1. Image from this site.
Yup. It's all that and more.
Kritamo (also known as rock fennel or samphire), is a wild Grecian seaside herb that's reportedly a bit difficult to harvest and apparently available domestically at Whole Foods.
Kritamo often appears in salads, though it's not likely to make a cross-Atlantic trek in a form other than in alongside olives as a seasoning ingredient (it absorbs the briny flavor of the Mediterranean).
I'm thinking kritamo could also happily make a substitute for the brininess usually brought to the party by capers.
If you actually get your hands on some, why not try a simple Kritamo-Lemon sauce for pan-fried fish or fowl?
2 tsp kritamo, chopped (or substitute capers, drained)
4 Tbsp butter
1 clove garlic, finely minced
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp fresh parsley, chopped (optional)
1. In a skillet or saucepan, melt butter
2. Sautée garlic 1-2 minutes, or it just begins to color.
3. Add lemon juice and kritamo or capers. Reduce heat and heat for 30 seconds.
4. Remove from heat and add parsley, if using.
5. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle immediately over cooked chicken, fish or steamed vegetables and serve.
Anyone have more experience with Kritamo? I'd love to hear about it. Post in the comments if you've got tips.