Eater's Log, 2nd Week of April 2012

foraging-haul-smI’m racing to keep up with the abundance of wild edible plants in season right now, plus making the most of all the fresh herbs that are back up in the garden. It’s a lovely problem to have.

Some things are weeks ahead of schedule thanks to the warm March, others are the April regulars, and they’re happening simultaneously. Violets, redbud blossoms, Siberian elm samaras, Japanese knotweed, ramps, nettles, garlic mustard…and that’s just for starters.

I’m also using up some of my food preservation pantry to make space in my freezer and on my shelves for the seasonal parade of fruit crops. One “use up” that turned out especially well was freshly foraged Japanese knotweed (tastes similar to rhubarb) plus strawberries from my freezer that I turned into a sorbet.


Confession: I canned way too much applesauce last year. Solution: turn some of it into fruit leathers. These make a handy grab-and-go snack that is much more portable than lugging a heavy glass pint jar of applesauce in my bag.

Fruit leather roll up made from home-canned applesauce

Fruit leather roll up made from home-canned applesauce

I came up with a semi-wild vegetarian meal that was really delicious. It was nettles and garlic mustard greens on rice with miso and wild ginger glazed tofu. I guess the nettles and wild ginger don’t really count as “wild” since I encourage patches of both in my garden:


The dandelions are in their annual full flush of blooms right now, which means the greens are already too bitter for my palate. What to do? Well, you might feel like trying out the recipe for dandelion wine that is at the end of this piece on wild edibles.

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