Huauzontle is a sister plant to Quinoa and is wind polinated. The plant grows upright branches with red tinted green leafy stems which produce flower clusters that have the appearance of baby broccoli buds. The buds sprout from tiny branches upward and outward from the plant's stems. One of huauzontles most noticeable features is its sharp herbaceous aroma which intensifies in close proximity.
The flower heads can be eaten in the same way one would eat broccoli and the leaves are also eaten like spinach. In Mexico the flower heads are often battered and eaten with a stick of cheese cooked into the batter. The flavor is also unique, with notes of pepper, spinach, mint and undertones reminiscent of broccoli. Only the buds, leaves and seeds are suitable for eating as the stems & roots are extremely fibrous.
Mature seeds can be ground into flour. It is the basis for one of the original gluten free breads.
In a temperate zone sow after the last frost. In the sub-tropics it should grow all year. As Huauzontle seed is very fine, to sow, scatter seeds all around the prepared area and water it in. Once it has been established it is quite drought hardy.