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foraging

April 29, 2010

When we lived in east London, we were only dimly aware of the changing seasons, swapping jumpers for t-shirts when it got too hot, and just about noticing the particularly splendid display of cherry blossom in Plashet Park. The area was so densely built up we could only see a snippet of sky, and our regular walk to the tube and back involved very little greenery. How different things are on the outskirts of Sheffield. Almost every day one of us will walk along the stream in the Porter Valley and as often as not there is some news to report on the progress of the seasons. First someone will announce that the wood anenomes are out:

At the same time as the anenomes, the celandines start to appear. Then gradually the valley takes on a distinctive smell as the wild garlic spreads across the banks of the stream. This year I have been making my first experiments in cooking with this delicious free food, starting with a very successful potato, leek and wild garlic gratin on Sunday. Since then we have tucked the leaves into cheese sandwiches and shredded them over salads. Tonight they worked brilliantly in a potato and onion tortilla.

For once I am in step with the times. Apparently the best restaurant in the world is big on foraging. I can definitely sense a new mood in our kitchen – nettle soup next, perhaps?

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. April 30, 2010 3:02 pm

    I love wild garlic and I think it works extremely well in sandwiches and such! I have not yet foraged a meal from the wilds but I think the nettle soup is certainly something I intend to eat soon. Thanks for the inspiration, and have you read ‘Wild Gourmet?’ I have it, and your post has just reminded me I need to get into it!

  2. May 3, 2010 6:16 pm

    That potato gratin looks so delicious I’m going to have to give cooking with wild garlic a go.

  3. May 4, 2010 6:55 pm

    Thanks for the link to the recipe. We’ve no streams, but we do have a little block of wild garlic growing on our allotment so tortilla coming up I think.

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