Thursday, April 8, 2010

Wild Leeks

Every year, we go to a sacred spot in the woods nearby where we harvest wild leeks. This is one of those places you read about in books--where the foraging is easy and plentiful. It is one of the few places we have foraged where we aren't overly nervous about our impact on the land.

Spring has arrived early this year. Everything is about two weeks ahead of schedule (what a good year for our adventure!), so we decided to trek out to the leek field. Sure enough we were greeted by our amazing carpet of wild leeks. I have never been more upset to forget my camera. (The posted picture is from last year.) It was 82 degrees. Baby Yub Yub and I were in sundresses. She and her papa walked barefoot among the spring ephemerals. It was idylic.

We harvested just enough leeks for three meals. We carefully found a spot that was thick with plants, dug down deep to get the roots (the white rooty flesh is the most flavorful) with a garden trowel, and tamped the earth carefully back into place. The baby loved this adventure and did her own digging with a stick.

The foraging is going to get heavy fast. During our woodsy ramble we found spring beauties, Canada mayflower, and violets all ready for harvest. Thank goodness Thag's spring break is soon. We are going to be busy.

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