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The ultimate forager’s guide to working with any wild plant in the field, kitchen, or pantry—featuring plant profiles, harvesting and preservation tips, and easy recipes
From harvesting skills that will allow you to gather from the same plant again and again to highlighting how to get the most out of each and every type of wild edible, trusted expert Leda Meredith explores the most effective ways to harvest, preserve, and prepare all of your foraged foods. Featuring detailed identification information for over forty wild edibles commonly found across North America, the plant profiles in this book focus on sustainable harvesting techniques that can be applied to hundreds of other plants. This indispensable reference also provides simple recipes that can help you make the most of your harvest each season.
About the Author
Leda Meredith has been foraging since she was a toddler (it's her great-grandmother’s fault). An instructor at the New York Botanical Garden and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Leda is also the author of five books including Northeast Foraging and The Forager’s Feast.
"This is a book that needed to be written—an invaluable resource for anyone who wants to be more than an armchair forager." —Hank Shaw, author of Hunt, Gather, Cook
"Identification is the first task of the forager, but what comes next? It turns out, almost everything. How does one select the best berries, the tenderest greens, the freshest mushrooms, and gather them in an ecologically responsible manner? What is the most practical way to clean, crack, or pit them? How can they be stored? In The Skillful Forager, Leda Meredith answers just these questions, laying out the basic skills that she has perfected through decades of gathering wild plants and using them in the kitchen. She leaves readers with a set of practical, simple, healthy, and delicious recipes that can be adapted to a variety of ingredients, wild or domestic—just the way that real home cooks cook everyday food. Because to Leda, that’s what foraged food is." —Samuel Thayer, author of The Forager’s Harvest
"In The Skillful Forager, Leda Meredith doesn’t just describe some of her favorite wild edibles, she lays the groundwork for you to become a better forager. Leda covers recommended plants and mushrooms, safe and mindful harvesting, and wraps it all up by describing multiple cooking and preservation techniques we all can use to make the most of our harvests. The Skillful Forager takes you from field to table with excellent information, inspiring ideas, and lots of fabulous flavor." —Ellen Zachos, author of Backyard Foraging
"The Skillful Forager is a product of this millennium, reflecting current concerns such as sustainability. It adds some interesting wrinkles to help those who would like to safely sample wild foods. Foraging today is largely an urban conceit, engaged in for any number of reasons, most of which are valid. Perhaps the most important is encouraging closer observation of the natural world. The author’s extensive experience with teaching foraging has generated many helpful suggestions, not only for the beginner, but the veteran forager as well. It includes detailed harvesting techniques; the best time to harvest; which part of the plant is most useful; keeping the harvest fresh; and methods of preparation for the table. The book’s strength is its emphasis on techniques for collecting, preparation, and ethics…engaging and readable." —Botanical Research Institute of Texas