Go wild… and forage yourself a free feast!
Food inflation is the highest it’s been in 45 years, at 19.1 per cent. of course, you don’t need to be told this if you’ve been to the supermarket recently as the prices seem to be going up before our eyes!
So there couldn’t be a better time to learn how to forage for the free food you can harvest from hedgerows, woods, beach and even city streets if you know where to look and what to look for.
Apart from blackberries and nettles, I’ve never really known what is edible or where to find it. So I went on two day long courses in foraging and cooking foraged food. One was with Hannah Nicholls, who runs natural Pathways in Kent (natural-pathways.co.uk) and the other with Lucia Stuart of The Wild Kitchen (thewildkitchen.net), also in Kent.
Hannah’s course was in wonderful ancient woodlands. We learnt to spot different trees such as walnut and hazel, which of course produce delicious nuts.
We also found roots that you can eat, such as burdock and silverweed, and seeds you can gather to eat, either raw or fried, such as nettle and dock seeds which can also be used as flour extenders when ground up. We even foraged for acorns which can be eaten by humans, as well as pigs, but only after they have been soaked to get out the tannin and ground into meal or flour.
Read Jasmine’s column in full here