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Challenge for the Weekend... Trees...
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Lloyd



Joined: 24 Jan 2005
Posts: 2693

PostPosted: Fri May 20, 05 9:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Challenge for the Weekend... Trees...  Reply with quote    

cab wrote:
This weekends challenge, for those willing to accept it...

Many, many trees have got good edible leaves and/or flowers at the moment. Elder, hawthorn, beech, lime, etc.

This weekend, use some! Make a wine, put some in salad, make flower fritters, etc. And let us all know next week how you got on!

My own current plan includes elderflower and oak leaf wine and elderflower fritters.


Bugger That!...revolting!

Deedee



Joined: 10 Jan 2005
Posts: 250
Location: Surrey
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 05 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cab,probably a daft question but...curious to know as where I live most of the trees are near a very busy main road ,the trees there are covered obviously in yuck from car exhausts etc Would they be dangerous to eat on those grounds or not?I might have tried this if I was a bit more off the beaten track... maybe

ButteryHOLsomeness



Joined: 03 Apr 2005
Posts: 770

PostPosted: Fri May 20, 05 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

cab wrote:
Daydreaming wrote:
I can imagine my OH face if I plased a bowl of leaves in a bowl in front of him at the table. Really? Beech tree leaves??


If the beech leaves are still young and velvety soft, they're delicious, and they are the basis for what I rate as the best liquer you can make with wild ingredients here in the UK.

Get them older than that and they're a bit too tough.


so short of using a really tall ladder how can i collect beech leaves from the 40foot tree in our garden?

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Sat May 21, 05 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

ButteryHOLsomeness wrote:

so short of using a really tall ladder how can i collect beech leaves from the 40foot tree in our garden?


Got an axe?

More seriously, you oughtn't have any trouble finding shorter beech leaves.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Sat May 21, 05 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Deedee wrote:
Cab,probably a daft question but...curious to know as where I live most of the trees are near a very busy main road ,the trees there are covered obviously in yuck from car exhausts etc Would they be dangerous to eat on those grounds or not?I might have tried this if I was a bit more off the beaten track... maybe


Not likely to be dangerous, but likely to be exceedingly yucky.

Poke about parks near you, have a look at hedges, see if you can find waste ground... Keep your eyes open and there's cracking foraging even in our big cities.

Blue Sky



Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Posts: 7618
Location: France
PostPosted: Sat May 21, 05 10:32 am    Post subject: Re: challenge for the week Reply with quote    

Nanny wrote:
and i have to say it wans't bad and all the better because it was free apart from the lettuce


You mean to say that you don't have lettuce ready in "le jardin" yet?

We do .... nah nah na nah nah!

Sorry

nora



Joined: 20 Mar 2005
Posts: 1539
Location: West Yorkshire
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cab - i've put my beech leaves in gin. When it comes to the sugar and water bit, do I just heat it until the sugar until it's dissolved or boil it a bit once its dissolved?Also do you let it cool before mixing it with the beech gin? Thanks

Nanny



Joined: 17 Feb 2005
Posts: 4520
Location: carms in wales
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 7:02 am    Post subject: challenge for the week Reply with quote    

the whole salad had a sort of peppered/spiced flavour - i didn't overdo any of the constituents so i could honestly say it was very pleasant.


and free !!!!!

oh and sometimes i make my own salad cream as well and though not free, that is equally as nice particularly poured over your own home grown eggs..............

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

nora wrote:
Cab - i've put my beech leaves in gin. When it comes to the sugar and water bit, do I just heat it until the sugar until it's dissolved or boil it a bit once its dissolved?Also do you let it cool before mixing it with the beech gin? Thanks


Get it warm-ish, but I've never seen a need tio boil it. Mix it straight in. Don't skimp on the good glass of brandy. Givei it a good stir and bottle immediately.

judith



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 22789
Location: Montgomeryshire
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Well, I had a go. Tried beech, copper beech and hawthorn. I have to say we were a bit underwhelmed. The copper beech was horrid, beech was not bad, with a slightly sweet flavour, and hawthorn just tasted green. The wild sorrel and bistort that I picked as well were infinitely nicer.

The whole salad looked rather pretty, though, mixed in with some little gem (from the greengrocer) and rocket, plus red and green lollo rosso (from the garden).

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Judith, wild sorrel tends to completely dwarf any other wild green leaf for flavour, except perhaps rocket, wild galic, maybe jacky by the hedge, cuckoo flower... Okay, forget that. Wild sorrel is GREAT. It's such a strong flavour, that in a completely wild salad at this time of year I'd tend to go for big leaves with it; something like lime leaves works well, along with common mallow, plenty of chickweed, rocket and beech. Copper beech isn't something I particularly enjoy either, but I'm surprised you didn't like hawthorn, I really enjoy that one.

Whereas bistort I can't see the point of Amazing how tastes differ, isn't it?

judith



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 22789
Location: Montgomeryshire
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I'll keep working my way down the hedge then, Cab . Are there any that I should avoid? What about honeysuckle? (Lots of laburnum in the hedges around here, I definitely won't be trying that one).

As for the bistort - I lived for 5 years down the road from the home of the World Dock Pudding Championship, so I got a taste for it then!

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon May 23, 05 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Judith wrote:
I'll keep working my way down the hedge then, Cab . Are there any that I should avoid? What about honeysuckle? (Lots of laburnum in the hedges around here, I definitely won't be trying that one).

As for the bistort - I lived for 5 years down the road from the home of the World Dock Pudding Championship, so I got a taste for it then!


There are LOTS of trees not to eat

Stick with those you know are safe; a good guide would be Richard Mabeys 'Food for Free', he's good at telling you which trees to chew on.

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