Friday, November 20, 2009

Where the wild foods are

Pic: Marijke Honig; Brooklyn Bridge Park.

I had always thought I was alone. The outsider. Isolated. But then I started to read more blogs and realized that there were Others. Fellows. Masters (or Mistresses), in fact, of the art.

Of foraging.

I didn't know it was called foraging when I went with Marijke to the park in DUMBO, with the train roaring over the Manhattan Bridge, and gathered amelanchier berries for jam. Or even when I was looking for mushrooms under the pine trees in Tokai in Cape Town. Or stopped for shaggy ink caps growing on a suburban lawn, to eat later on toast.

And now that I have read Euell Gibbons' well known book, and read Ellen Zachos' blog, enviously, admiring her ID skills when it comes to mushrooms I don't know, and made a side-trip to Leda Meredith's domain, I realized I needed to learn more, in the, er, field/s.

Desire is not enough (though it sure makes the engine go). Knowledge is needed.

To that end, I will be following 'Wildman' Steve Brill on Sunday in Prospect Park, as he leads a late-season foraging expedition. There is one in Inwood tomorrow too. Please visit his website if you are interested.

Prospect Park promises to deliver sassafrass roots, persimmons, and possibly...this is what I'm hoping for with last night's rain: enoki and oyster mushrooms.

And when spring and summer roll around I will definitely be tagging along again.


  1. I would LOVE to go mushroom hunting. Unfortunately, I don't think we our mycological club is very active here in Massachusetts.

    Thanks for the links! They are fabulous!

  2. Apart from the mangoes, there is not much foraging here.But soon we will take plastic bags and get some "windfalls" along Mango Avenue. Bruised and bitten, but edible!

  3. You are starting down a slippery slope my friend, and I say Welcome to the Club! I hope you find oysters on Sunday and I'm going to post a recipe chez moi just in case you do!

  4. Let us know what you find. I think all the Ginkgo fruits have been collected.

  5. I definitely see a wild thing in that picture...

  6. I'm experiencing another attack of jealousy here. Hope it's good.

  7. very good stuff marie-have a wonderful time...please make some liquor out of whatever you find for the little people. (us)

    of to read some eull gibbons. renaming cats "eull"


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