Wild Food - Foraging for Dinner

Tonight's dinner was an impromptu foraged meal: fiddleheads (young ferns) and dandelion flowers, alongside some leftover quiche from Friday night.

Fiddleheads are easy to prepare. Harvest when they are 6-8 inches tall. Remove the hairy or papery covering. Soak in cold water for a few hours. Boil for 10-30 minutes in several changes on water to remove bitterness (length of time depends on what kind of fern it is). Strain and do a quick saute in oil or butter with herbs and salt for flavor. Yum!

Dandelion flowers are super tasty. At my SIL's I saw she had a ton of them (in an untreated lawn, they're organic! And the only ones that are are really safe to eat.) so we harvested a small bucket worth of the largest flowers, without the bitter stems. At home, I mixed a whole egg and some water and dipped the flowers in. Then I dredged them in a 50/50 mix of Amaranth & Unbleached Wheat flours with salt and pepper. Fried them up in a pan with a 1/2 inch blend of Olive and Canola Oils. The sweet flower petals are the perfect blend to the slightly bitter green calyx underneath. Lucas adored them with ketchup, while we dipped ours in hot sauces.

We also went fishing for the first time this year (season opened last weekend.) Apparently the fish are biting in the rivers, but we went to a nearby lake where they haven't quite woken up yet... The only fish we "caught" were the minnows in our bait bucket. Lucas had great fun catching them over and over by hand and transferring them from bucket to bucket, often bestowing a kiss upon their fish lips. Yes, he made me kiss one, too. So if you hear about a "fish flu" pandemic going around, you will know where it began. Hah ha. He also let a few of them go in the lake, lucky fish!

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