Who cares that it’s only 1ºC? Not us crazy forager-types! Undeterred by the wintery weather, we went out for a day of seashore exploration and cook-up on the North Yorkshire coast…
The sea keeps coastal temperatures much more stable during winter, so even if there isn’t much around to forage inland, you might be lucky on the seashore. On the cliff-top, the alexanders were already in leaf – I’ll pick some of the more slender stems to candy in the spring. We also found hogweed already flowering. Along the paths and into the dunes we came across sea beet, buck’s-horn plantain, wild carrot, common scurvy-grass, sea radish, sea mayweed, coltsfoot, mallow… and even a couple of ‘slender blewits’ as I call them, Clitocybe/Lepista sordida to add some purple to our basket!
We sautéed up some scallops, samphire (cultivated at this time of year) and scarlet elf cups from another foray with pine nuts, alexanders tips and sea beet, whilst snacking snacked on nettle crackers (nettle leaves and seed, oats, sourdough starter, and seaweed powder) with buffalo mozzarella & punchy wild garlic pesto (frozen from last spring, full of ramsons leaves & buds, toasted foraged hazelnuts & walnuts, foraged dulse seaweed flakes, Yorkshire goat’s cheese, wild common & wood sorrels & Yorkshire rapeseed oil). With dusk descending, and a cheeky shot of sloe vodka to warm you up, all-in-all a lovely foraging foodie day out by the sea.
We’ll be jointly hosting an intensive foraging experience in the New Forest at the end of September 2015 which will hopefully include a coastal foray on day 2… watch this space!