Tropical fruit flavors are not commonly detected in my neck of the woods. When they are, the experience is unforgettable.
Mayapple (Podophyllum peltatum) is an eastern North American plant whose ripe fruit tastes like a mix between pineapple and Starburst candy. All other parts of the plant (e.g., rhizomes, leaves, stems, and unripe fruits) are considered toxic.
My first encounter with a ripe mayapple fruit was unforgettable. I actually smelled the fruit before I saw it. Within seconds of harvesting, I indulged in what little edible material was available. The taste was ambrosial — almost too good to be true — and from that day forward I became a devout seeker of ripe mayapple fruits.
As it turns out, conditions this year have been very good for mayapple fruits. Foragers in many locations have been reporting bountiful harvests. Because conditions have been fruitful, I decided to film a video in which I discuss key tips for improving your yield.
Foraging Wild Mushrooms is an online course that is currently open for enrollment until September 2nd. This go-at-your-own-pace video course is perfect for beginners who are looking to develop their skills. If you are eager to harvest wild mushrooms but don’t know where to start or where to go, Foraging Wild Mushrooms will equip you with the necessary skills to ensure that your harvests are safe and rewarding. You can learn more by clicking this link.
Thanks for reading and watching, and thank you for your continued support!
What would summer be without a trip to the local berry patch?
In my neck of the woods and fields, it wouldn’t be summer at all.
Some of nature’s tastiest fruits — black raspberries, red raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries — ripen during the warmest days of the year. A perfectly timed visit to a prime location can yield a berry bonanza.
One such prime location includes sunny openings within rich woods. It is here where a particular kind of raspberry grows. Known as wineberry (Rubus phoenicolasius), this semi-recent newcomer to the North American continent produces delicious edible fruits that taste like tangy red raspberries.
During my latest visit to a local wineberry patch, I filmed a video in which I discuss the factors that contribute to the success of wineberry in North America, as well as tips for locating wild populations.
I was a recent guest on the WildFed Podcast hosted by Daniel Vitalis. In this conversation, we chat about my favorite topic as of late: trees. You can listen to the interview through one of the following links:
OH, MY GODDESS – you’ve got to make these Wild Chamomile/ Pineapple Weed muffins! Their unique aromatic flavor ( a cross between zingy pineapple and soothing chamomile) just permeates these moist fragrant muffins which are made doubly scrumptious by the cream cheese filling. These are one of my favorite summer treats and my poor pre-diabetic…
This is especially true when we consider what it takes to harvest pawpaws.
Pawpaws are incredibly delicious fruits that are produced by pawpaw trees (Asimina triloba). Green and kidney-shaped, these tropical-tasting berries are considered to be the largest edible fruits produced by any native North American tree.
Many people are interested in finding pawpaws for the first time this year. Some people will wait until the fruits are ripe in September to begin their search.
I would suggest another approach: begin your search right now.
Scouting the land in advance is an essential part of harvesting wild food. When preparatory work has been done ahead of time, successful harvests are much more likely to occur. Such is the case when we understand what it takes to find pawpaws.
What does preparatory work look like? How do we begin our search for pawpaws? What kinds of habitats are worth exploring?
I answer all those questions in a brand new video. If you are interested in harvesting pawpaws this year, check it out!
I was a recent guest on the Silvercore Podcast hosted by Travis Bader. In this conversation, we chat about foraging, the importance of learning trees, and why money is necessary to protect land. You can listen to the interview here.
In last week’s post , we began exploring the build of an earth oven. An Earth Oven is a simple structure, made of clay, sand, straw, stone, and fire brick, that you can use to cook foods in a traditional way. Last week’s post walked you through the first set of steps for building your…
I am enamored of lilac. Her scent on warm spring evenings evokes the happiest of memories. Every year I attempt to capture her glorious scent in baking and every year I learn yet another lesson about her culinary intricacies. Through trial and error, I discovered what perfumers knew long ago, lilac’s intoxicating fragrance is notoriously…
An earth oven is an oven made of cob (a mixture of clay, sand, and straw) with insulating features (firebricks, bottles). It is an extremely efficient and sustainable method of doing any baking you might need to do. One firing of your earth oven can allow you to bake different things for hours (pizzas, bread,…
I thought I’d share this recipe from Gather Victoria Patreon for two reasons. May is the sacred month of the Blessed Virgin Mary and in Roman Catholic tradition, roses are the emblematic flower of the Blessed Virgin Mary – and roses will be blooming shortly! On May 31st a “crown cake” is typically baked “affirming…
It pays to pay attention to plant labels. Especially in the case of tarragon–especially if you are planning to use tarragon in your cooking. If you are growing tarragon for culinary purposes, be sure the label on the plant or seed that you buy says “French tarragon” or Artemisia dracunculus ‘Sativa’, to be sure. If the label says only “tarragon,” you may be purchasing Russian tarragon, which is not the tarragon you want for your roast chicken or béarnaise sauce.
Here in Texas, there’s a saying: “We have two seasons – summer and winter.” That’s not quite true; but if you’re not paying attention, spring can slip right past. And the last thing I want is to miss a single day of our glorious, but ephemeral, spring.
The nights here are still cold – sometimes approaching freezing – but the robins have arrived, so I know springtime is near. It’s time to listen for a hushed prelude to seasonal change, time to look for intimations of life beginning to stir. Every few days, this calls for a visit to the two redbud trees in my Houston neighborhood to check the trunks and bare branches for any evidence of tiny pink flowers. Nothing to see for weeks on end; then suddenly, here they are – scattered crimson buds emerging straight from the furrowed bark, swelling with life, and…