A reader asked me: “Why do you use cold water when making a cleavers infusion?” At the time I didn’t have an answer. I had simply taken the old herbals at face value. The answer can be found here.
A comprehensive list of wild edible plants in the Carrot, Apiaceae, Umbelliferae family that have historically been used as food.
According to Thomas Elpel in his fantastic book Botany in a Day (6th edition), there are 7 genera and about 220 species in the magnolia family. I have spent considerable time exploring which species have edible magnolia flowers. Below is a list of the ones that I have found in the ethnobotanical record. It is by no means an exhaustive list. Edible Magnolia Flowers Magnolia coco 2 Magnolia grandiflora 2, 3 Magnolia
What are the traditional and modern uses of wild garlic? I’ve written a comprehensive article on the uses of wild garlic as food and medicine, including its history and folklore here. Can you eat wild garlic? Yes, all parts of wild garlic are edible. From pesto to kimchi, you’ll find a list of my delicious plant-based wild garlic recipes here. What parts of wild garlic can you eat? Wild garlic is very
For many, their foraging journey starts by looking for “free food”. Yet as we continue down this amazing path, we begin to realise that we are actually being fed on many levels. Not only the physical but mental and emotional. The very act of gathering wild edible plants takes us on a deep journey into self. It’s a coming home, a re-membering of ourselves. For myself, foraging is not just
Fermenting foods has finally come of age. Back in 2010, I interviewed the godfather of the modern fermentation revivalist movement Sandor Katz. I was speaking with him because he and my plant mentor Frank Cook had both been instrumental in bringing foraging and fermentation into the mainstream. Sadly, the interview was to cover his memories of Frank, who had died the previous year. Back in the day, Frank would teach
For the last few years I have taught on my plant courses about the Moken sea gypsies, and the extraordinary relationship they have with their environment. Little did I realise that I would ever get the chance to meet them. I had tried back in the Winter of 2015 while visiting Myanmar formerly Burma, but the restrictions on travel by the military government forbade. The only official way was with
Reverence exists all around. The smile of a child. The kiss of the rain after a long dry spell. The smell of Land as she sighs in delight for simply existing. Reverence for self and soil. The first meeting point starts with breath. Where we go from there is up to us. With so much darkness spouted over the digital airwaves. So much anger at what is being done to
Today I want to share with you a little about what I have learnt as a forager. And it goes against the grain about how we usually look at food. I have an aphorism: “Wild culture is not mono-culture”. “What the bloomin’ heck does that mean Robin?” I hear you think. Let me explain. Note: I am using hawthorn as an example. It might not actually be in season when
I generally like to play in the kitchen. I use recipe and cookbooks simply as guides. And although I create recipes and post them on this site. I really try and encourage people to NOT slavishly follow my recipes or any recipes they find in books. Cooking is about creatively interacting with your imagination. Your senses. In bygone days, cookbooks often only listed ingredients. Not a quantity or measurement in
Autumn is the season of fruits, nuts, roots, berries and seeds. I am acutely aware of the Autumn smells on the wind. The freshness in the air as it strokes my face. The frost on the ground. As we slip into the dark months, I love going out late afternoon to gather. There is a deep sense of connection to place during this seasonal shift. And as a quiet stillness