Acorn Eating Revisited

It's been another year of learning and experimenting on the acorn front, and the more I learn, the more I love working with "oak nuts."

Cooking Chanterelle Mushrooms

Chanterelles vie for my favorite mushroom with the great porcini. Chanties are the light to porcini's dark, pheasant not beef, white wine not red. Our season has begun!

Making Mirto, a Sardinian Liqueur

The first time I drank mirto, the dark, herbal-tasting Sardinian liqueur, I fell in love with it. Little did I know then how easy it was to make, and when I found a myrtle bush, it was game on!

Curing Olives: Don’t be Afraid to Lye

Most of the olives I cure each year are done in a brine. But this year I tried curing green olives with lye. I was scared at first, but after some experiments, I'm now a believer.

Berries of the Coastal Range

I went to Marin County in search of huckleberries. I left with a full huckle bucket, but also something I'd never seen before: Salal berries. It pays to keep your eyes open.

Berries of the Sierra Nevada

The high Sierra, or really any Western mountain range, is a treasure trove of summer berries. We recently found four different kinds on one trip.

Berries of the Central Valley

I've been on a wild berry rampage this month. This will be the first of three berry posts, starting with picking elderberries and blackberries here in the Central Valley.

Manzanita Cider

If you live on the West Coast, you've seen the stunning, red-barked shrub called manzanita. But I bet you did not know the berries make a delicious cider...

Wild Fennel

Fennel, also known as anise, is one of my favorite vegetables. It also happens to grow wild around here. Summer's the time to collect wild fennel pollen as well as the plant's delicious green seeds.

Harvesting and Cooking Wild Plums

June and July are when wild plums come ripe. Wild plums, you say? Where would I find them? Some are hidden in secret spots. Others are all around you...

Sassafras and Homemade Root Beer

On Independence Day, what better wild ingredient to feature than Sassafras? The aromatic bark, leaves and roots were the first plant exported from North America to Europe.

Dining on Daylilies

While I always knew daylilies were edible, I had no idea they were so delicious! We gathered a bunch on my trip to New England last week and they're so good I may grow them as a food crop.