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Recipes

The poppy seed cake I have been making for walks around the marshes and shingled beaches can be found at this website: http://chocolateandzucchini.com/archives/2008/12/flourless_poppy_seed_cake.php

It is great for people allergic to flour, as it contains none! I add mulberries or blackberries on top before putting into bake.

The vegetable patties have an imprecise recipe, as does most of my cooking, but I was very happy with their texture and flavour, and had a lot of fun picking the ingredients.

Two versions I recently served on walks are:

1. Grate 2 – 3 large handfuls of wild sea-kale roots, sea beet roots, or any other edible root you care to use. Add 1 large potato, and half a courgette, also grated. Added 4 large handfuls of fat hen/red goosefoot, finely diced with magimix (still going after 28 years of careful care by my mother, or maybe they just used to make things that were designed to last?). Mix and add an egg or two. Add flour to help achieve consistency of patties. Season with salt and pepper, and plenty of hogweed seeds (finely cut with scissors, they don’t grind well). Fry on a low heat with butter, so as to not burn the outside before cooking the inside

2. In the second version I substitutued the fat hen with sea purslane, sea blight, sea-beet leaves and samphire. Due to their natural saltiness, there was no need to add any extra sodium. I also spiced with alexander seeds instead of hogweed.

Hearty Hawthorn Syrup

If anyone has tried using hawthorns as wild food they’ve probably tried Ray Mears’ recipe, wherein he makes a messy mush before magically removing all the seeds and skins without even using a sieve! I am very impressed having tried it myself and ended up nearly cracking a friend’s front tooth on one of many stray seeds. And so my second attempt was guided by my efficient minded girl-friend, who suggested heating, with water, the hawthorn, blackberry, elderberry, honey mixture, mashing with a potato masher, and then sieving before setting in the fridge. Hawthorn has an amazing ability to set like jelly when mashed cold and left for just 5 mins, and so there was no reason to think it wouldn’t also set after being heated; other jams set after being heated, right? Wrong, it didn’t set and so we were left with a mauve mass of creamy hawthorn sauce. Very delicious nonetheless and currently being added as a sauce to porridge, desserts, scoops of ice-cream and even straight up! After all, the health benefits are manifold, think fast flowing rivers of unobstructed blood, coaxing and coursing your extremities to life. As to why it didn’t set, I am thinking the reason it sets so readily when cold may not be down to pectin, and instead some other heat sensitive molecule, or perhaps pectin only works when heated in the presence of sugar??

More to follow!

One Comment leave one →
  1. September 2, 2011 9:38 am

    Thanks Henry – Looking forward to getting ‘out-there’ for another forage and into the kitchen to have a go myself – unlikely to be as delicious as you versions though~!!! Dani and Zakhary!

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