Which six everyday weeds in your garden can also make a gourmet snack?
PUBLISHED: 09:08 23 July 2018 | UPDATED: 09:08 23 July 2018
James Wood of Totally Wild, who took a group of festival-goers foraging around Jimmy's Farm at the festival there this weekend.
What passes as a weed to some can pass as a delicious treat to others.
Fireweed is thriving at this time of year, and doesn't seem to mind the hot weather. The leaves can be used like rocket in salads, while the flowers don't have much taste to them, but they can be picked and added to cocktails for a visual treat.
We joined a foraging trail at Jimmy’s Farm Festival with Totally Wild’s expert forager James Wood, to discover which common wild plants can also be added to pickles, syrups, salads and teas to add exotic new flavours - and health benefits too.
Foragers were then able to blend the plants they picked into a margarita to make a Patrón Tequila summer cocktail.
Fennel. This is a version of wild fennel, and the flowers have a very strong taste of aniseed to them. Chefs grind them to a yellow powder and sprinkle it onto oysters for a burst of flavour.
The Elder bush has green buds at this time of year, which can be pulled off and pickled to be used like capers on pixxa and in pasta. When the berries turn dark, people expect them to have a fruity taste, which they don't. You can use these dark berries to make elderflower wine or a syrup that goes nicely with duck.
Dandelion. This week might be the scourge of your lawn, but has a surprising variety of uses. The tops can be eaten with croutons, although they have a bitter taste so need to be paired with a sweet vinigarette dressing in salads. pick the dandelion flower, boil, the petals, and add sugar and lemon juice for a vegan honey. The roots are traditionally used as a tonic to cleanse the body.
Chamomile - The chamomile tea you buy in the shops is with dehydrated chamomile, but you can just add three fresh flowers to your hot water instead for a fresher taste. Iif you add it to ice cream or cocktails, it makes them taste more creamy.
Pineapple weed - this plant grows everywhere as a weed, and lives up to its name as it really does taste like pineapple! Pick the pineapple-like head off it and eat it freshly plucked.
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