It’s almost midsummer, not that you’d notice from the weather. All the same, plenty is happening in the new kitchen and garden.
This year I’m adding Rose petals to my Elderflower champagne as suggested by Andy Hamilton, and I will try the combination in cordial also. It looks very pretty. Every dry sunny spell has me abandoning all to go gather blossoms.
Last chance for wild garlic leaves also. We have a heap of them to process today, get into jars and freeze. The new kitchen layout is working so well with lots of work space, a bright, clean look, and hot water on demand!
We have sown seeds for a new bumble bee patch of wildflowers. Seeds saved from beautiful wild meadows include Knapweed, Vetch, Selfheal, Thistle, Quaking Grass, Scabious, Trefoil and Yellow Rattle. Our hope is to introduce far more diversity of species in the wild patches, and the Yellow Rattle is partly parasitic on grass so if it grows, it will help to keep the grasses from overwhelming everything else.
It might still look like winter out there but things are stirring in the hedges and woods. Superfoods springing up all around.
Saturday March 10th sees our first foray of the year, time to get up close to nature, Ecofarm Gort, book through website or contact me by email email@example.com (no phone at moment as I’m off in Australia enjoying sub-tropical storms)
Sunday March 11th sees us back in Clareen Offaly, places available, as above book through website or contact me by email.
Workshops during October were disrupted by storms and so I am offering a extra date in December, Sunday 10th @Nenagh. This will be in conjunction with the good folks @ Steeples and include a farm forage at Shanbally followed by lunch and workshop at Steeples, book through steeples or call Mary 087 7418536.
First dates for 2018,
There will be more dates and detail added later.
Eco farm @ Gort Co. Galway, book with ecostayireland.com
SATURDAYS @ ECOFARM 2018
SUNDAYS @ Wildfoodmary Clareen
More dates and detail coming in November, book your own date with Mary 087 7418536.
A fun day with transition year students today,here is just a selection of plants we worked with.
We also enjoyed some Wild Damson brownies (Gluten and dairy free of course) and Nettle Lemonade.
We saw flowering Hazel with it’s big male catkins and tiny pink female flowers, which is the part that becomes the Hazelnut.
We tasted a Garlic flavoured Cabbage, and found scented Sweet Violets.
We found Sorrel, loaded with vitamin C and learned about some common natural pain killers.
We identified wild foods packed with Protein and many other nutrients.
We dug for Pignuts met the resident donkey, dogs and animals.
Thank you all for a busy fun day,
This is quick and easy to make, keeps well in fridge for 2 weeks and freezes well. It is a method of saving flavour of your mushrooms for later. The butter is sublime on toast, risotto, baked spud or as a special treat with poached eggs.
Other mushroom combinations work also,this is based on my latest seasonal finds.
400g Winter Chanterelle,
100g horn of plenty, or tablespoon dried, soaked in red wine.
2 shallots, diced.
tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped.
Black pepper, sea salt and dash of truffle oil if you are lucky enough to have some.
450 g soft butter.
Heat a little oil in a heavy pan, Sauté the shallots, add mushrooms and seasoning, except truffle oil and cook ten mins on medium heat.
Allow to cool, when cool cream butter and add the mush mix, finish with drop or two of truffle oil. Pot into small jars and freeze if not using within 2 weeks.