I found out last year that there are tree leaves in my yard that can be used in cooking for flavoring and in tea. I was really surprised especially by the fig leaves. They have a very distinctive coconut scent and flavor. I am not much of a griller but I bet they would be a great addition to someone wishing to smoke a chicken or some other meat that they might wish to add a hint of coconut to. My mother in law has asked that when ever we come to visit that we bring a branch from our mulberry tree as it is one of the trees that her African Grey bird is allowed to eat, berries, leaves, bark and all. Anyways here is my little drying contraption. I also added a bit of lemon grass and mint to the mix.
Tuesday, August 14, 2018
I was in the garden picking things for a big person mail when I ran across these tiny things fit for a mouse. There were mouse melons, and that’s what they’re really called, and black nightshade that taste like little tomatoes and then there are berries called Goji berries which are the little red berries in this picture. I don’t really like them much but I’m going to dry them and add them to soups and things in the winter but the rest are perfect mouse size and I thought they were cute. All of these fruits and berries are the size of my thumb or smaller...
Monday, June 18, 2018
I remember working with juvenile delinquents when I was younger. There were a few dare devil kids who I loved to take into the woods around the home where I worked as a resident counselor. They were always game to experiment with wild foods that we could gather together. I think that is a powerful tool when trying to get kids to eat healthy. If they learn about it, gather it, and learn to cook it in a flavorful way, it is something they are more likely to taste and eat and hopefully, carry with them into the future. I have talked to parents who without prompting, told me that after reading the book with their child, the child asked to do research on wild things they could eat from their back yard. They told me that they found that redbud blossoms ( and seed pods ) were both edible and they had already gathered and eaten some. Kids are curious by nature. Cash in on that curiosity and join them in the wilds of your own back yard!
Well if foraging is finding and using the often over looked.... maybe this will qualify. I remember these from my childhood. Mom was never one to let something go to waste... a hold over from the depression era... and watermelon rind was one of those useful things the people often threw out after eating the melon. All I had to do was google a couple recipes and I was on my way. I took out some of the sugar, added a little stevia and some heat ( red pepper ), and a bit more turmeric than called for, and I had a pickle that I loved. Very pretty too.
Saturday, June 9, 2018
I just keep snipping off the new shoots from my poke plants and bringing them in. That way they produce well into the summer and I do love poke greens Please remember to boil 2x and pour off the water each time. or you may be sorry ... pictured here too are my purslane plants that look as big as cultured purslane. I kept seeds back last year and threw them into a planter and garden and have beautiful plants this year. They are super high in nutrients. Add to salads, soups, greens.
I went outside this morning and was greeted by a sweet smell that I traced to the pretty elderberry flowers in the corner of my yard. I know the birds are going to get most of the elderberries ( they usually do) but I remembered that you can make delish fritters ( pancakes ) using the flowers. So I picked some that were fully blossoming and then my husband was late coming home so they kind of lost their flat selves but I decided to make us a desert w them anyways and they were very good! Basically I just threw together some pancakes using some coconut flour and wheat flour... basically pancake batter, dipped the blossom ends in and there you have it. If I were doing it again I think I would strip off the flowers and throw them in the mix as we didn't eat the stems. Oh, sprinkle w confectioners sugar when hot.
Sunday, May 27, 2018
I went to sweep off the stairs for the garage apartment and noticed that the mulberries have started to drop and so decided to make some wine. I intended to make more dandelion wine this year but never quite got around to it. I threw a few dandelions blossoms in for good measure. I also thought it might be an interesting taste to add just a slice or two of ginger it’s an experiment. In front of the jar or something that I have never tasted before but planted a serviceberry tree a couple of years ago in my backyard and this year I got to the berries before the birds did. They were very few and too good to throw into the wine. They taste a little bit like blueberries, but have a delicious flavor all their own that is kind of sweet. Wish me luck on the wine