Festival Foraging; still eating the Clover & Hawthorn

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I’ve recently returned from the Into The Wild Festival, near Lewes, where we held a series of Seasonal Foraging walks and talks.

Additionally at the Buddhafield Green Earth Awakening Camp, with daily walks and finding delicious new herbs along the woods adjoining the field.

What’s in season September – October – November:

In SE (& SW) UK, we have a selection of fresh fruit, berries, fungi, nuts & seeds, in addition to the leaves and roots from Summer.

Blackberries are still ripening if you’re lucky to find those still sweet or to keep and make apple & blackberry pie\crumble desserts or to juice or to turn into a smoothie to drink.

Elderberries are dark burgundy red in colour and are a rich source of Vitamin C and have been used in syrups (though often made with sugar). I prefer to add them into fresh fruit salads or to use as a garnish on other desserts as they have a rich but slightly bitter taste. To collect Elderberries, from the tree tops, they hang in clusters from the branches with tiny round berries (smaller than a petit pois!) Snap the branch holding the berries (it should snap cleanly off) and then using a fork to prize of the pretty berries, prize them off into a container, ready to turn into a liquid (through juice or heating with a little water in a saucepan). This is by far the simplest method I have found to use so far.

Sea Buckthorn berries however grow near to the coast, on prickly bushes which makes harvesting a little of a challenge. Nevertheless, these little orange berries are highly prized for their nutrient content and have been used to make into juice and their seeds for oil, for centuries, in China, as they contain many Omega EFAs including 3, 6, 7 & ( which is quite unusual in the world of plants). The berries themselves are useful to protect against Type II Diabetes (by stabilizing blood sugar levels) and contain Vitamins A, B1, B2, C, D & K. It may also help to prevent anaemia by improving Iron absorption. There are many more amazing benefits to these sharp flavoured, little berries. They make an excellent juice: The Peasant’s Lunchbox provides foraged berries in Somerset area and can be found here: Little Brympton Renewable energy micro-farm. My favourite combination is the mixture of Orange & Sea Buckthorn juices (with a dash of Hawthorn berry elixir tonic too)!

 

 

 

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