I taped this little commentary for our NPR station. I am such a proselytizing born-again forager, my God. Because it is a green, green world right now, at least here in the Northeast, and I cannot recommend enough that you try figuring out how much of that green you can actually eat! Because it might be a lot. It turns out that all kinds of plants are edible, especially right now, when they're still young and tender. Not just the dandelions, which I've written about, or the purslane, which won't be up for another month. But, oh, burdock and jewel weed and and violet leaves. Milkweed shoots and daylily buds and cattails. Mushrooms, if you're careful.
|We made garlic-mustard pesto, but you can make pesto with any tasty greens! I tend to use two packed cups of greens with 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup pine nuts or walnuts or almonds, and plenty of salt and parmesan.|
Birdy and I got these books out of the library.
Backyard Foraging, by Ellen Zachos is probably our favorite. But Northeast Foraging by Leda Meredith and Foraging New England by Tom Seymour are great too, as is another book, not pictured here: Edible Wild Plants by John Kallas.
|Birdy arranged these wild and semi-wild garnishes to jazz up a simple bowl-of-pinto-beans dinner. Clockwise from left: mint, sheep sorrel, violets, lemon balm, and a mix of Queen Ann's Lace roots (aka wild carrots) and chives.|
But it's not just the food. It's not. And it's not just the dopamine I mention in the radio piece. Or the risk, which I kind of love. It's also the time.
Sorry for all the narcissistic linking, but (relatedly) I have this up today too, in the Times. I am full of opinions, it seems. Enjoy your weekend, my darlings. xo
|We usually only harvest oyster mushrooms in the fall, but the weird weather sent out a spring crop. Here they are, sauteed, with fried eggs with sizzling vinegar. The best meal I ever ate.|