Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Scavenger Cooking

Read my first and second post in this foraging frenzy to catch up! It's time we took our bounty back to the kitchen to get some food in our bellies. On the menu- miner's lettuce salad, sauteed fiddlehead ferns, local oyster po' boy bruschetta, and potato nettle soup drizzled with cream.

I jumped right into the prep while I sipped some wine and shmoozed with my classmates. We carefully washed the nettles and lettuce, peeled potatoes and chopped onions and garlic for three large stock pots bubbling away on a portable stove.

Picture perfect salad garnish of nasturtiums and wild radish seed pods.

Don't forget your gloves when handling nettles! They keep stinging long after you pick 'em.

A kind soul from Marin Organic shucked oysters for our po' boys.

My personal handiwork. I never mind the stinky jobs. Just don't look too closely at my lazy knife skills!

The finished thistle, peeled at the root, boiled and chopped. Like a lovely, deeper, more mysterious celery.

The sauteed fiddleheads, as promised.


Our healthy helping of miner's lettuce, which I forgot to mention in the forage! Impressive how a handful from everyone can quickly add up. Also, the spritely weed on the bottom right is chickweed and usually grows alongside it.

Our finished salad. Notice the wine served in mason jars.

With one of our tour guides, Langdon Cook and some of the crew. Go to his post about the day here and look for yours truly modeling onions and garlic. And then check out our other teacher, Kevin's blog! And then buy both their books.

The dramatic baptism of the nettle to the soup pots. This gets added at the end when the potatoes are all cooked through.

The soup gets combined and then blended. Heating or blending takes the sting out of the nettle, so it can also be added to a raw green juice shake at breakfast. Great if you need ways to get extra protein and super vitamins.

The oysters were quicker to cook, just a little breading and fried in oil.

Technically we didn't personally forage these babies, but with aioli and crostini, they were my faaaavorite. I strategically stayed close to the stove.

Before the fiddleheads got sauteed, we cleaned off all those pesky little hairs for a prettier presentation.

But I still kept my eye on the oysters.

Our gorgeous labor of love, drizzled with cream and garnished with a fern.

And our foraged salad with vinaigrette, walnuts and crumbled blue cheese.

A meal and a food adventure I will never forget. Thanks, Kevin and Langdon!

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