A good friend invited us last Sunday morning, mothers day, to go foraging with a guide. She told us the trip was inspired by an outing she went on with her mother 30 years earlier. Her mother was in town visiting which made it all the sweeter. Sunday morning after a particularly hectic weekend of flowers and cooking I was not eager to jump in the car and head to Takoma Park–– it was so worth it!
I have a limited knowledge of a handful of mushrooms that I hunt in the fall, some greens that I find in Rock Creek and in my neighborhood but this was so much more.
Matt our guide, is knowledgeable and was fantastic communicating with our group which spanned about 6 decades in age. We talked edible, poisonous, science, native plants, invasive plants... Best of all–– we found food and not just novelty food... food that I will go in search of because in spite of the fabulous farmers, foragers and purveyors that I work with there were some things we found Sunday morning that I cannot get unless I go find them!
Stropheria Rigosa Mushroom– usually found in mulch, I have never had much luck finding spring mushrooms I will be on the lookout for these.
Sassafras Root– I chewed on this for most of our walk.
Black Locust Flower, A favorite! A friend who was on the walk called yesterday morning after dropping her kids at school because she found a tree with low hanging flowers... I plan to visit later this week.
Anise or Sweet Sicily, I need to go back and get some to flavor sorbet, fruit salad, a coconut based ice cream...
Wild Garlic– got greedy and took lots! I think it will show up on weekend Home Restaurant menu.Spice Bush, red allspice like berries in the fall... cannot wait to pair with fall squashes and fruits.
Tulip Poplar blooms, if you can get to them while they are filled with a sweet nectar, I am anxious to get a hold of some.
Cat Tails– also known as Cossack Asparagus, bottom is edible in the spring!
Bamboo Shoots, pick in spring, peel, blanch... unbelievably good–– in search of a large convenient patch!
Garlic Mustard Greens, these would be so good sautéed!
Wine Berry, ready in July– looks like a colorless raspberry... I have seen them before but never knew I could eat them.