Get Wild with Your Diet: Celebrating Foraging!

Everyone knows that many animals survive by foraging, searching for edible plants, berries, mushrooms, nuts and seeds, etc. in their habitat. But did you know that foraging can be a fun and beneficial hobby for us humans, too?

Foraging has a long history in the bay area, with groups meeting regularly to celebrate nature's wild growing gifts and to promote sustainability of our landscapes. For example, Forage SF holds wild food walks throughout San Francisco and the East Bay, teaching people how to find safe, delicious and nutritious edible foods in their own backyards. Groups like this can show you fun (and legal!) ways to harvest wild produce, especially since foraging isn't allowed in every natural space in the bay area.

For something really special, be sure to check out the Santa Cruz Fungus Fair this weekend (January 11-13, 2013) at the Louden Nelson Community Center. There are loads of fun activities planned, from cooking demonstrations to lectures on all of the edible mushrooms that grow nearby. There's also a kid's room with art projects, face painting and more.

If you're not quite sure where to start on your own adventure into the world of foraging, check out some of the informative books we have at the Santa Clara County Library District. Reserve one of these titles today from your local branch. Happy foraging!

Feast Of Weeds: A Literary Guide To Foraging And Cooking Wild Edible Plants

Feast Of Weeds: A Literary Guide To Foraging And Cooking Wild Edible Plants (2012)
by Luigi Ballerini and Ada De Santis

Both a guide to foraging and cookbook for the wonderful ingredients that can be uncovered, this book encourages readers to think outside the box when looking for wild grown produce. Each chapter is devoted to a specific ingredient that is commonly found through foraging, offering insight on where to locate the item and how to cook it once it's in your kitchen!

Foraged Flavor

Foraged Flavor (2012)
by by Tama Matsuoka Wong and Eddy Leroux

Tama Matusoka Wong is a professional forager, providing the ingredients for Daniel, the flagship restaurant for chef Daniel Boulud. In this book, she reveals seventy-one of her favorite foraged ingredients, and explains how and where to find them so you can create world-class dishes in your kitchen. Daniel's chef-de-cuisine Eddy Leroux shares recipes for each ingredient used in the restaurant, offering a gourmet introduction to the world of foraging.

The Bay Area Forager

The Bay Area Forager (2011)
by Mia Andler and Kevin Feinstein

Written specifically for bay area residents, this book contains over 50 ingredients that can be found through foraging in the wilds of the bay area. Be sure to have it handy before your first wild food adventure!

 

Read!