Despite being a huge fan of seasonal, local and home-grown food, I’ve never really gone hedgerow foraging. It’s something that I’m very keen on the idea of, but I’m always slightly worried that I’ll pick something inedible or even poisonous. But, today we were after something that even I can recognise in the wild…. blackberries (although Wikipedia informs me that they’re not actually berries, but aggregate fruits. I don’t entirely know what that means).
Over quite a short walk, and without trying too hard, we collected about 3-4 punnets of blackberries, some of which went straight into a pie, the rest into the freezer for future consumption. Yes, my fingers did get a bit purple (but that’s all washed off now), but that’s no hardship. More importantly, next time I probably wouldn’t go out wearing a brand new grey coat, but long sleeves are a must to save you from the prickles and stinging nettles to be found around the berries.
There is something immensely satisfying about picking your own food. Whether that is apples from a friend’s tree, courgettes from your parent’s green house, or tomatoes from your own pot, picking it yourself, and then using it straight away makes you appreciate the food that bit more (and often helps the taste immensely).
In this case, I picked the berries, and a very lovely mother in law then added them to some apple smush (made from last years apples and frozen) and home-made pastry. I’m not a huge fan of blackberries on their own, but the resulting pie, served hot from the oven and with a good dollop of custard, was delicious.
Cross posted at Moon in the Gutter