I love foraging, it deeply connects me with my natural surroundings while giving my walks some purpose. It also reminds me that for a lot of people (not only in a distant past) foraging is a way of living and a necessity to to eat fresh food and insure a heathy diet. We are so disconnected with where our food come from than too many of us rather eat plastic wrapped vegs that foraged food. Too worried about contamination, has a fox weed on this? What about the dangerous pesticides used by non organic growers and the plastic packaging leaking harmful chemicals!!
There are so many edible plants popping up in spring in our UK gardens, parks and woodlands.
Every year we forage stinging nettles that we dry and blend with fruit peels for our “low-waste tea”, This time of the year is also when you can find wild garlic and three cornered leeks. They are both great in risotto and soups. Last week I made a saag aloo adding blanched nettles and three cornered leeks to my spinach, it was fabulous!!
Three cornered leeks mild and oniony best before their pretty white flower blossom.
We even spotted a small patch of sweet wild violets in the ecological park near our house which reminded me of family walk in France when I was young.
Sweet and delicate wild violets, found in woodlands.
I also picked some cleavers (Aka sticky willy ((:) to make a detox/immunity booster cold infusion inspired by the brilliant @thebotanicalpharmacist . I added some mint and it was really fresh and lovely! I really recommend it!
Cleavers have a mild, refreshing taste, a bit cucumber like, great for cold infusions.
- Note that you should never forage a plant your not 100% sure of recognizing, as a novice the best is foraging with people that can show you.
- And only pick plants that are growing in abundance in allowed areas, most protected ecological areas have restrictions and it is better to ask permission and advices before collection anything.
🌱If you are interested in foraging our friend @thegardenglutton is giving an online talk on the subject, end of April, https://www.royalparks.org.uk