Vitamin C Loss and Rosehips

The following is an extract from a report on Vitamin C loss in cooked Rosehip syrup, by the British Medical Journal dated May 2, 1942. “Recently Meiklejohn and Stewart (Biochem1. J., 1941, 35, 761) described a more accurate method of measuring ascorbic acid in foods, but Dr. C. P. Stewart has informed me that his “…results suggest that usually there is no gross error in determining the ascorbic acid content

Why People Fear Eating Wild Food

The following is an extract taken from Stephen Harrod Buhner’s classic book on the direct perception of Nature called The Secret Teachings of Plants. This is a must-have book for anyone with a passion for the land and the wise green beings we share it with. One of our greatest fears is to eat the wildness of the world. Our mothers intuitively understood something essential: the green is poisonous to

When Is The Best Time To Harvest Seaweed?

I’m often asked when the best time to harvest seaweed is. It is important that you do not harvest a seaweed during its reproductive phase. This varies on a species to species basis. Rotating harvest areas is thought to be the least damaging to the ecosystem and allows seaweed stands to recover faster. Harvesting seaweed by hand using scissors is the most sustainable practice. Look up the nutritional content of

How to Store and Process Acorns

Processing and storing acorns has a lot of mystique surrounding it. The process that follows comes from Marcie Mayer (who I interviewed for my podcast – listen here) and has been developed over 20 years. How to Dry and Store Acorns Always gather your acorns green. This way the acorns are likely not to have been infested by larvae, beetles and rodents. Take the acorn out of the cup and

Top Plant Identification Books For Foragers

I am often asked which edible wild plant identification books I recommend. There isn’t a specific edible wild plant ID book available for the UK, so you are left with using wildflower plant ID guides instead. Most wild food books only give cursory plant ID specifics and generally not enough to ensure absolute certainty. Botany In A Day This is a must-have book for all plant lovers. Rather than learning

In Memory of Frank Cook 1963-2009

I am deeply saddened by the news that Frank Cook (plant teacher and herbalist) died on Wednesday, 19th August 2009. I met Frank Cook while filming him in September 2008, that meeting and numerous email exchanges had a life-changing impact on me. His gentleness and depth of plant knowledge was truly inspiring, and it was via these e-mails that he always encouraged me through EatWeeds to spread the plant knowledge. Here

Interview With Miles Irving

Miles Irving popped round to my house with his family for a ‘cuppa’ on his way back from Cornwall the other day. I managed to persuade him to take 10 minutes out and give me an interview. Listen as this master forager discusses his outlook on wild foods and foraging and then goes on to talk about his latest book The Forager Handbook, which some are calling the new Food

The Forager Handbook – A Review

A couple of weeks ago I was sent a review copy of The Forager Handbook by the publisher, and I sat down to give it some attention. I didn’t get beyond the first few chapters before I realised that here was a book that rivaled Mabey’s Food For Free and personally I feel it surpasses it.

Are There Any Poisonous Seaweed In Britain & Ireland?

I often get asked if there are any poisonous seaweed around Britain. From my own research, I discovered that Desmarestia is the only poisonous seaweed that you should leave well alone. However, I wanted to double check my own knowledge against that of a world-class expert. So I went and asked Professor Michael Guiry, Director of AlgaeBase and world authority on seaweed. Here’s his reply: “As far as I know,

Edible Cherry Plum

Zillah and I were up in London the past few days visiting family and friends and doing a bit of ‘business’, talking and meeting people who are at the cutting edge of community healthcare using food and plants for healing. While wandering around on the top of Putney Common looking out for wild edibles, we chanced upon a wonderfully abundant Cherry Plum tree. Literally dripping with fruit. Out came my

How To Collect, Dry & Store Dulse

Collect your dulse (Palmaria palmata) from a clean seashore. I collect my dulse off a beach which is MCS recommended. This means it has the highest water quality standards. Further reading: The Edible Seaweeds of Britain and Ireland Step 1 Make sure that you cut your dulse just above the holdfast, leaving a little bit of the stalk and the blade. This allows the dulse to regrow. The holdfast is