Friday, 27 April 2018

Foraging A Meal

I always enjoy a simple bit of foraging food for a meal and I like teaching the children what they can look for.



The other night we picked some wild garlic for tea to go with stir fried veg. I then went and foraged in the garden as well! I'm really missing my purple sprouting this year after the snow and cold got it but I can still russel up a meal from the garden. 
I have a bed of swede (rutabaga) in the ground from last year that never grew to much and has just started to go to flower. I harvested these unopened flower heads as a broccoli substitute, as well as some kale leaves and a few of last years chard leaves. 
Stir fried in a bit of butter with a huge amount of wild garlic thrown in it made a good side veg for our omelette and potatoes, possibly a hint of bitterness but not enough to put me off. 
It always makes me think as I look around my garden and I can see there's so many edible things that we don't really eat any more.  So many more tings would have been thrown in the pot to make a soup or stew, leaves from brassicas, weeds, flowers, I wonder what knowledge we've lost over the years.
This year I'm determend to make more of an effort to using some more of my weeds from the garden - there's certainly enough of them!

Anyone cooking what others would consider waste?

16 comments:

  1. Carrot tops, beetroot tops and sweet potato leaves are nice. Saute the sweet potato leaves with garlic. Beetroot tops are lovely in soup. the carrot tops, blanch and use as a side dish. we eat a lot of parsley, I use it as a salad ingredient rather than a garnish

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    1. So you serve the carrot tops like a hot veg? How long do you blanch them for? I'll have to try this!

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  2. My husband has always wanted to learn all about edible wild plants and weeds, but I have to confess just handling our large vegetable garden and berry plantings are enough for me! But I do harvest and use Lamb's Quarters (a weed here in our area) each year if that gives me credit for anything! And young beet greens are always yummy.

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    1. I really want to learn them so I can teach my children them as well. Also this time of year was hard for people to feed themselves in the past and I struggle to have much we can pull out of the garden in the hungry gap, I'm hoping a bit of foraging will help!

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  3. Nettles for tea, soup and feeding the compost heap.

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    1. I make the nettle tea as a plant food and make soup a couple of times a year, not found a recipe I love yet though!

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  4. I raise my salad fork to you! My fork containing chickweed and dandelion foraged from my yard this morning.

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    1. Great Stuff! I find dandelions quite bitter but I think I need to work on not liking everything so sweet, I'm sure I can grow to like them! We have so many after all!

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    2. Have you tried blanching the dandelion leaves (as in cover the plant with a pot, not in boiling water)? It does reduce the bitterness. And use in a salad with lardons or bacon, making a hot dressing with the bacon fat in the pan- bacon makes everything better!

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  5. Beet greens are the only thing on this list I have ever liked, they are very good, cooked as spinach and with the tiny beets attached to them...yum!
    As a child I was forced to eat dandelion greens every spring, ugh, very bitter.

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    1. I'm with you on the dandelions, too bitter for me! I love baby beets and we grow lots of chard for the same thing!

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    2. dandelions are good for you, cleans the toxins out of you. with garlic and olive oil mixed in pasta it is very good

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  6. Today was our first salad with wild edibles;willowherb shoots, sorrel and ground elder. Most of those are usually considered as weeds. Spring is a bit behind schedule here, and those are the first new growth of anything. Nettles are so tiny I don't have patience to pick them (I'll need magnifying glass to find them). We had few leaves of kale earlier, but it can't be counted because you are suppose to have kale.
    I pruned my black currants and took branches and put them in to a vase; I'll be using little leaves in salads or just eat them.
    I'm going to strain some birch sap to drink (maybe I'll make some mead), I saw first sap drops a couple of days ago, so if I can find a clean plastic bag I'll start collecting it.
    Today we were cleaning the veg plot and found some tiny carrots!

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    1. I didn't know you could eat willow herb shoots! I'll be looking into this as I have a lot of that growing around! I've ordered some perennial kale plants for here, I'm hoping I can propagate them to have a good patch, we like kale here and it seems a good plant to have if it'll last a few years.

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  7. I love wild garlic and use a lot of it, but also make pesto for when it's no longer in season.

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