FOR­AG­ING: WHERE WILD THINGS GROW

Food and Travel (UK) - - 200 th Issue -

As peo­ple be­come more aware of in­gre­di­ent ori­gins, it’s no sur­prise that for­ag­ing has blos­somed as a trend. We ro­man­ti­cise the idea of ‘for­est-to-fork’, as­so­ci­at­ing wild foods with sim­pler times when la­bels didn’t read like sci­en­tists’ ex­per­i­ments and what we ate re­flected the lo­cal en­vi­ron­ment. While restau­rants have long em­ployed for­agers, the man who cat­a­pulted it into the lime­light was Hugh Fearn­ley-Whit­tingstall, whose Noughties TV shows fea­tured him scour­ing Axmin­ster for pro­duce. The con­cept has since spread to ca­sual din­ing restau­rants, home kitchens and even bars, with for­aged in­gre­di­ents such as rose­hip be­ing used in cock­tails. It’s a great skill to learn, but needs real ex­per­tise to en­sure that what you’ve picked is good to eat. Al­ways con­sult a rep­utable source be­fore try­ing it out for your­self.

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