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Please recommend a guide to edible plants and fungi

(17 Posts)
TheWitchsCat Fri 19-Feb-16 00:18:44

Just that really. Im looking for a basic "this mushroom is safe, that leaf will kill you" sort of thing

winchester1 Fri 19-Feb-16 04:27:12

Where shouts are you?

Personally I his avoid mushrooms all together too much to get wrong and not much gain.

Do you know much about plants at all? Do you pick fruit (blackberries, red currents, a
Elder flowers etc) already?

winchester1 Fri 19-Feb-16 04:27:52

Not shouts! Abouts

cozietoesie Fri 19-Feb-16 08:50:57

You might also find this old thread an interesting read, OP.

TheWitchsCat Fri 19-Feb-16 09:19:03

I'm in Yorkshire. I do a bit of foraging and would know obvious ones like blackberries and elder flowers.
Thanks for the link

DoreenLethal Fri 19-Feb-16 09:25:00

There is a chap in Leeds that does foraging walks and is a mushroom expert.

DoreenLethal Fri 19-Feb-16 09:25:48

I have to say though, if you are at the level of just wanting to know what blackberries and elder are; please stay away from fungi! At least until you are much more confident.

DoreenLethal Fri 19-Feb-16 09:26:48

I do foraging and have led professional walks but I stay well clear of fungi - I don't like mushrooms myself and am in no way qualified to know what is and isn't going to kill someone.

cozietoesie Fri 19-Feb-16 09:32:23

I steer clear of fungi as well. As I think I mentioned in the other thread, I've also found, leaving aside the poisoning aspect, that most fungi in the wild are pretty fly blown and you rarely find enough of the edible ones to do anything decent with. Other foraged plants are a better bet for me.

redhat Fri 19-Feb-16 09:37:28

I also steer clear. We have various fungi in our woods and I'm pretty sure I know some of them but the slight differences can really be deceptive, particularly if you're not examining two species side by side. It's not worth the risk of brain damage and even death.

Sadik Fri 19-Feb-16 09:41:00

This River Cottage handbook is a really excellent ID guide for fungi - it sticks to species that are really easy to identify. Yes, be cautious, of course - but a shame not to enjoy things like shaggy parasols, giant puffballs or hedgehog mushrooms where you really can't go wrong.

TheWitchsCat Fri 19-Feb-16 09:41:02

I do already know what blackberries are grin but I assume there are lots of different leaves and plants I wouldn't necessarily think to eat that are perfectly edible and nutritious.
I would err towards leaving fungi alone as well tbh, they always make me nwrvous

redhat Fri 19-Feb-16 10:06:33

I have a collins pocket gem book called food for free which I like. I think I spoke about it on the other thread but that would have been under an old name.

Sadik Fri 19-Feb-16 10:20:29

YY to Food for Free by Richard Mabey - it's the classic ID guide. What wild foods do you eat already, OP?

As well as blackberries/elder the main things we harvest are wild plums in late summer, wild garlic in spring, nettles in spring for soup, mushrooms as mentioned above, hazelnuts (though the squirrels get most of them), dd likes young hawthorn and lime leaves in spring - sure there are others that'll come to mind.

winchester1 Fri 19-Feb-16 14:00:12

Have you a good recipe for the kettle soup, I'd like to give that a go.

Sadik Fri 19-Feb-16 14:14:25

Pick lots of young nettle tops, wash thoroughly, then cook down in the water clinging to them (I put a bit more water in the bottom of the pan so they don't stick). Drain in a colander, then chop roughly.

Chop an onion and soften in some oil (or butter if you prefer), add a couple of medium potatoes peeled and diced small, fry a bit more, then add the cooked nettles, water to generously cover and a couple of teaspoons bouillon powder. Simmer until the potato is breaking up and the whole thing is cooked. I then partially blend with a stick blender, but leave a bit of roughness to it IYKWIM.

You can skip the pre-cooking the nettles stage, it's just easier to chop them once they're a bit cooked, I find.

TheWitchsCat Fri 19-Feb-16 19:04:15

Just wild garlic, blackberries and elder so far, im really not maiing the most of natures bounty am i?! :D I'll check out food for free. That nettle soup sounds yum

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