Category: Baking

Wild food supper

We recently had some friends in the field (pun intended) over for a wild food supper.

I thought I’d share with you some of the dishes we ate.

But first the prep. Gathering ingredients for wild foods is fun and adventurous and sometimes a little crazy.

Like surfing for our seaweed, or in this case, climbing up a ladder to collect the dried Strelitzia nicolai flowers towering overhead. You can eat the fresh seeds raw and the dried ones can be ground up and used as a flour. Just remember to leave more than you collect.

Strelitzia nicolaiStrelitzia nicolia dried flowers heads

Then you have to brave the bugs and spiders to find the beautiful golden fynbos pirate treasure inside the very hard seed pods.

Strelitzia seedsStrelitzia n. seeds

The seeds are like little hard black coffee beans with a white inside that can be ground up. The gorgeous orange fluff attached to them is the aril that is also edible. It’s a lot of work for a small amount of flour, but a labour of love is usually delicious!

wild food dessertAgar agar and strawberry brule w. Carissa macrocarpa flower and Strilitzia shortcake

Pictured above on the left you can see the final product…I used the flour to make a shortcake and included the aril for added edible decoration.

So now I will backtrack to the starters. Sorry. Its like reading one of those books that the beginning is in the middle and you start at the end and finish in the future. Confusing and edgy. Exciting and wonderful –  like these sweet and salty seaweed nutsSeaweed nuts

This a super easy, highly tasty snack to make. Whether you are hosting a Rugby Watching Braai or a Canape and Cocktail Soiree, these will go down a treat.

Using freshly washed and rinsed sea lettuce or Ulva, chop up a cup full and toss with assorted nuts. season with sea salt and sugar and pop in the oven on a low heat until the nuts are golden brown and the seaweed is crispy.

Yum.

We also enjoyed oven baked periwinkle and seaweed samoosas

Periwinkle samoosas

Periwinkle samoosasPeriwinkle and seaweed samoosas

Seaweed couscous salad – get the recipe here.

Couscous seaweed saladUlva couscous salad with wild garlic flowers

Never-fail-to-please ruby relish on Bree

Carissa and beetroot relish on breeCarissa macrocarpa berry and beetroot relish topped with Carissa bispinosa berries.

Wild garlic rolls and farm butter

Tulbaghia rollsTulbaghia violacea rolls

These were used to mop up the exquisite juices of the mussels….

Musssels and spekboomMussels in a creamy white wine sauce with garlic, thyme, Salvia chamelaeagnea, Portulacaria afra and whole baby onions.

For dips we had Morogo, Wild garlic and King Protea seed pesto and a Wild sage sour cream

Morogo pesto and salvia sour creamMorogo, Tulbaghia violacea and Protea cyneriodes seed pesto. Sheeps milk sour-cream flavoured with Salvia dentata.

We hope this inspires you to be creative and adventurous with your cooking this year –

Happy 2014!

 

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Kids Forage and Harvest Morning – Pizza!

Last Saturday we had such a fun laughter filled Kids Forage and Harvest morning!

Our lovely group of excited kids collected wild herbs, edible flowers and garden veg to create and eat PIZZA!

And yes, moms and dads, grannies and grandpa’s – they ate ALL THEIR VEG UP!!!

The mothers who were there were all very pleased with this and asked when the next one was…. It’s this coming Saturday the 9th of November!

Here are some highlights from our morning:

Kids foraging courseWere off!

Kids Foraging coursePicking carrots

Kids forage morningBella the pig!

Kids forage and Harvest morningChecking the goods

Farm animalsFarm animals!

Kids Forgae and Harvest morningRinsing the flowers

Carrot manMr Carrot Man

Kids Forage and HarvestCreating edible masterpieces

Kids forage and harvest courseYum!

Foraged and harvested pizzaSo tasty!

Kids forage and harvest morningSay cheese!

Hope you can join us at our next exciting morning 🙂

Indigenous edibles at Kirstenbosch

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to go on a guided Indigenous edibles walk entitled “Fynbos flavours – a culinary adventure”at Kirstenbosch led by Di Thomson. You can find more of their exciting events here.

Kirstenbosch was really showing off that day, everything was crystal clear on the first warm sunny day in Spring

Kirstenbosch botanical gardensHere are just a few of the incredible edibles we saw:

Portulacaria afraSpekboom – what a magnificent specimen!

Wild mintOur delicious local wild mint – Mentha longifolia

Numnum berry bush

Num num!Carissa! The num num berry bush

Cyclopia genistoidesThe sweet-smelling Honeybush or Cyclopia genistoides

Wild rosemaryWild rosemary – Eriocephalus africanus

Salvia africana-luteaBruin Salie or Salvia africana-lutea one of our local Sage plants

Tasting indigenous ediblesAnd the cherry on top was a taste session afterwards! With amazing local indigenous products and sweet and savory shortbread baked by Di herself.

Tasting the goodnessYum!

Thank you Di for your lovely talk and the best shortcake ever ❤

Kids Forage and Harvest Morning

Last week we had two brilliant Kids Forage mornings.

Forage and Harvest classroomJust do the math:

Kids + school holidays + baskets + edible flowers & wild herbs + farm animals + an awesome playground + baking + paper + crayons

= A bunch of happy kids, floral & wild herb scones with lashings of jam and cream, fynbos iced tea, art, shrieks of laughter, new friends, plant knowledge, full tummies and
a Wild Fun Time!

Check it out:

Tasting spekboomDaring each other to eat the Spekboom leaves

Picking and tasting Borage flowersTasting Borage flowers

Chatting along the walkDiscussing the merits of foraged wild edibles versus harvested crops. Or how mushy the mud is.

Peppermint PelargoniumPeppermint Pelargonium …”It tastes like bubblegum!”

Bella the pigMeeting Bella the pig

GoatsJust kidding around

Washing the flowersWashing flowersWashing the flowers and wild herbs

Drying the flowersThen spinning them dry

choppingChop chop

Making sconesMaking the scones

Tasting the scone doughQuality control tasting

In the playgroundIn the playgroundIn the playgroundHaving fun in the playground

Time for scones!Scones are ready!

Flower and wild herb scones with cfeam and jamYummy

Tucking into sconesYummy

Flower sconesIn my

Flower scones with jam and creamTummy!

plant drawingArt classBird drawingProud little artistAnd such creative artists!

Thank you to all the lovely children and their wonderful parents for bringing them for the fun filled morning.

Next time we will be making pizza!

Hope to see all those who who could not make it at one of the next Kids Forage Mornings.

Spring Forage and Harvest course

On a freezing cold and drizzly Saturday morning, our wild food enthusiast group set off on a Forage and Harvest garden tour.

We looked, picked and dug, touched, smelt and tasted, prepared, cooked and ate indigenous edibles, organic veggies, floral foods, wild herbs and weeds.

Everyone walked away with new plant knowledge, recipes, notes, a packet of seeds, new friends, a full belly and a smile on their face.

Here are a few of the many beautiful images that Juliette de Combes took on the day:

Image

Wild garlic

Gumboots required!

In the veggie garden

Borage

Cornflowers

Pelargonium flowers

Snacks

Kapokbos

Nettle

Fennel

Prepping

Wild garlic roll

Cooking

Relish on Bree

Nettle and spinach soup

Feast!

Thank you to all the wild food enthusiasts in the group!

 Lets do it again sometime – new season, new ingredients.

If you want in on the fun, contact us

and discover local wild food.

Forage, Feast and Garden Tours

Good Hope Gardens

Fynbos Flavours

Forage, Feast and Garden Tours

This half day course takes place in and around the Good Hope Gardens Nursery in Cape Point run by Roushanna and Gael Gray on weekends and can accommodate 12 people. A minimum group of 8 is required.

Group bookings can be arranged on request in the week. Corporate bookings for up to 20 people via special arrangement. Starting time for the course is 10am. To book please contact roushanna@hotmail.com

Cost

The half day course includes pre-prepared wild food snacks and drinks tasted along the walk, a simple delicious meal shared by the group that we will forage along the way and a pre-prepared wild desert. You will also receive information sheets and recipes on the plants that we will use in the meal.

R500 per person or R1800 for group of 4 friends.

Alternatively you can book a Wild Food Meal and sit down and enjoy a Wild Food tasting lunch at your leisure (minimum of 10 per group)

What to expect

Each course is different according to seasonality and availability in the gardens and the bush. Explore our gardens, discover and pick edible floral foods and fresh organic vegetables. Learn about indigenous edibles, and how to utilize them in your kitchen, how to grow them in your garden and their medicinal properties. After the snacks and tour we will get creative and prepare and share a meal. This will be followed by questions and answers. You can also enjoy a 10% discount in the nursery retail should you wish to purchase any indigenous plants for your garden.

What to bring

Gumboots or comfortable walking shoes, raincoat/sun hat – suitable outdoor gear. Cameras are welcome. Don’t forget an open mind and your sense of humor!

Other courses and walks we offer:

Coastal Foraging

Kids Forage Harvest and Feast

Educational Fynbos walks

Guided fynbos walks

 

Visit This Post for an introduction to your guides!

Sun tea Stuffed squash flowers, purple carrots and wild garlic  Patty pans IMG_20130426_113018

Great article and wild food recipes

This week we had a lovely write up in our local newspaper about our foraging, feasting and garden tours in The Falsebay Echo:

Image

Included in the article were two of my wild food recipes: Wild Asparagus Quiche and Wild Syrups which I will share with you below.

Quick and Easy Wild Asparagus Quiche

Pastry:

100g flour, 100g butter, 100g grated cheddar cheese.

Filling:

2 cups of washed wild asparagus tips, half a cup of spekboom (Portulacaria afra) leaves, one young onion diced, 3 free range eggs, 50g smooth cottage cheese, 60g feta cheese, half a cup of milk, a tbs of cornflour, half a tsp of baking powder, one tbs butter for frying.

Method:

Rub the flour, butter and cheese together until a dough is formed and press evenly into a greased pie dish.

Fry the onions in the butter until translucent and then add the spekboom and asparagus and stir fry for five minutes.

Remove from heat and let it cool. In a bowl, whisk the remaining ingredients together and pour over the uncooked pastry shell. Carefully spoon the asparagus mix equally over the egg mix and bake in a preheated oven at  180 degrees until golden brown, about half an hour.

Wild Syrups

Ingredients:

1cup of scented leaves – for example Peppermint Pelargonium, Rose Pelargonium or Wild mint leaves – washed and patted dry with a dish towel. Half a cup of sugar. One cup of water.

Method:

Place all the ingredients in a saucepan and simmer over a low heat. Cook until sugar has dissolved – this takes about 15mins, stirring occasionally. Strain through a sieve, squeezing the last of the syrup out of the leaves against the sieve with a spoon. Decant into sterilized bottles. Enjoy over ice cream, yoghurt, as a cordial or in a cocktail!

Peppermint Pelargonium syrup