Episode 12: Wild Edibles

It’s an amazing thing to walk down the street and to pick up a weed or a flower and eat it.  It’s a skill that I know little about, but have been learning and enjoying.  This episode explores some of the common edibles that you may see around town or in the woods.  I also show how to cook some of the greens.  Check out the full recipe and go out and eat those weeds.

Special thanks to  herbalist Lise Wolff for sharing some of her edible knowledge.

Note: It is not encouraged to eat Milkweed raw as some say it is poisonous.  Also, the smaller the plant, the better and the stalks are the best part.  If you read online about Milkweed, many say you should boil it three times.  This is no longer considered to be true.  If you find the milkweed to be bitter, don’t eat it as you could be eating the supposedly poisonous relative, you could get sick if you eat a lot.  BEFORE picking wild foods, PLEASE get yourself a few field guides.  My favorite are the Samuel Thayer books.

  • http://www.thegoodcooknj.blogspot.com The Good Cook

    My grandfather always foraged for his greens; dandelion, sorrel, wild onions, water cress not to mention mushrooms. Thanks for reminding us that the earth really does provide for us, we just have to know what to look for.

  • JJ

    I’ve never harvested the weeds around the yard, but have tried to stay knowledgeable about what is edible around me. Its defineatlly neat to see it all put together in a meal as I would have no clue how to actually prepare them. Definetally pretty cool.

  • allison

    as someone with a herbalist background, i found this episode particularly great. :) so glad you found some garlic mustard! it’s one of my favorite wild edibles to munch on my walks through prospect park. provides a nice bite in wild salad greens too. nice work, daniel.

  • http://www.kevinkossowan.com/ Kevin

    I only started eating wild edibles in the past few years, and can’t believe how much we now rely on things like dandelion, chickweed, and lamb’s quarters to fill out salads, greens, etc. I’ve gone so far as to plant a variety of native edibles in a ‘forest garden’…in my front yard, like highbush cranberry, saskatoon/juneberry, nettles, native herbs, etc.

  • http://mrandmrshalpern.blogspot.com Mike

    I didn’t really think that you could make anything delicious from "weeds", But that ravioli looked so good. I wish I had your culinary skills. Sometime I suppose. Practice makes perfect, right?

  • Jen

    great episode. this kind of positive exposure for 'weeds' will help dispell the negative connotation of many suburbanites. let's rethink our yards, america! we have had a lot of fun making garlic mustard into pesto. i learned something about the day lilies, so I am looking forward to those guys popping up in the warm weather. thank you for including milkweed, let's save that for the monarchs. on the east coast, where i live, milkweed is scarce and i was actually surprised it is in the backyard alleys of minnesota!
    great work!!
    thank you.

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  • Megan

    Garlic mustard is an invasive species – pick as much as you like!

  • http://www.facebook.com/andyenochs Andy Enochs

    This is so cool! Where can I find more information on what is and isn’t good to eat?

  • David Goodman

    Great episode! Another great source for wild edibles is Green Deane at http://www.eattheweeds.com.