I’ve been reading a lot of wild edible foraging and recipe books lately, and I figured I’d share them with you.
Most recently I have been reading The Wild Table: Seasonal Foraged Food and Recipes by Connie Green and Sarah Scott. Although some of the recipes in this book aren’t a gluten-free vegan’s cup of tea (Stir fried dandelion greens with duck fat and garlic), the descriptions of the wild edibles and the stories she tells about them are fabulous.
In fact, just her introduction alone is worth the read: how Ms. Green got into foraging foods for restaurants. Ms. Green explains that in the 1980s it was hard to sell anything foraged to any restaurants: the only two chefs who acknowledged her chanterelles were French - one denied they could even be chanterelles because he felt they didn’t grow in this country, the other preferred his tinned chanterelles from France, feeling they were superior to fresh American chanterelles.
I love Ms. Green’s and Ms. Scott’s out of the box thinking when it comes to using the wild edibles such infusing vodka with evergreen needles and the incredible sounding: “Connie’s Favorite Persimmon Pudding with Brandy Hard Sauce.”
Many of the recipes are certainly from and for gourmet kitchens…and I have a few friends who I know would love to get their hands on these recipes and work their culinary magic!
For me - who loves simple plant-based cooking and wild edibles foraging - there is plenty for me in this book. I can’t wait to try the basket-grilled morels over a fire this spring - a simple recipe of butter, garlic, salt and pepper which Ms. Green describes as “simply the best way to cook morels” and the Fresh Mulberry Ice Cream, though I will adapt the recipe replacing the sugar with a natural sweetener like agave or maple syrup, and the half and half with home-made cashew milk, though I have no doubt her original recipe is divine.
The pictures in the book, both of the wild edibles and the recipes, are gorgeous. Full page spreads of morels roasting over a fire, freshly picked lobster mushrooms, huckleberries flowing out of the bag and onto a plate.
I can’t get enough of this book: reading about her experiences and what she has to say about the plants, drinking in the color pictures, ruminating over the recipes.
This is definitely a great one to have on the bookshelf!