The Purslane Portulaca oleracea. Throughout Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Mexico, purslane leaves are used as a culinary herb or leaf vegetable. Slightly salty and sour in taste, it may be used fresh as a salad, stir fried, steamed, or in soups and stews. In Australia, indigenous communities use the seeds of Purslane to make seedcakes.
Purslane Portulaca oleracea
Portulaca oleracea (common purslane, also known as verdolaga, pigweed, little hogweed, red root, pursley) is an annual succulent in the family Portulacaceae, which may reach 16 in in height.
Approximately forty cultivars are currently grown.
It has smooth, reddish, mostly prostrate stems and alternate leaves clustered at stem joints and ends. The yellow flowershave five regular parts and are up to 6 millimetres (0.24 in) wide. Depending upon rainfall, the flowers appear at any time during the year. The flowers open singly at the center of the leaf cluster for only a few hours on sunny mornings. Seeds are formed in a tiny pod, which opens when the seeds are mature. Purslane has a taproot with fibrous secondary roots and is able to tolerate poor compacted soils and drought.