We spoke to our in-house forager Kenny to share with you some of his top foraging tips.
Previously a trained chef, Kenny’s love for foraging, particularly mushrooms, was discovered when working at Baliffscourt Hotel and Ockenden Manor in West Sussex for 15 years.
After doing two book launches with Italian chef and food expert, Antonio Carluccio and going on several foraging days with Roger Phillips, the writer of Wild Food: A Complete Guide for Foragers, Kenny soon learnt a thing or two about fungi.
For those of you keen to start foraging, here are Kenny’s top tips:
- Ensure you have the Landowners' permission.
- Dress appropriately for the time of year.
- Check what you have picked in a reputable book and then cross reference it with another to ensure you don't make any mistakes. Don't rely on online sites for identification.
We have an extensive range of foragers’ handbooks available for you to purchase. Make sure you check out the full collection, HERE.
- Only pick what you’re sure about, especially when it comes to mushrooms.
- Only pick what you will use. Responsible and sustainable foraging is a must. Remember, some wildlife depends on these fruits.
- Take appropriate equipment to gather and carry what you are intending on picking.
- Keep to the Countryside code. Watch this video or visit the Gov website for more information.
- Watch the weather before you go as it will help you know what to expect to find. For example, berries ripen after sunny periods and mushrooms flush a few days after the rain.
- Think about how you are going to keep what you pick to extend its life and have a recipe ready. Are you going to freeze, dry, pickle or preserve it as a jam?
Check out our full foraged range HERE to discover the delectable relishes, jams, and chutneys Kenny makes using his handpicked Somerset treasures.
- Build up a mental map of other plants and remember them for when their products are in season so you can go back.
- Keep your eyes peeled for elderberries as they are in season and make great cordials and jams.
- Enjoy being out in the beautiful countryside!
On 28 October, we will be hosting a discussion and tasting based evening where you can learn more of Kenny’s top foraging tips and how to identify certain plants and mushrooms. Book your space, HERE.