Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Sauteed Cattails - BC Wild Foods - Experiment #1

I'm always on the hunt for new and unusual food sources that you can pick in British Columbia. Apparently, cattails are yummy; the female (non flowering) head can be cooked and eaten like corn (it doesn't taste like corn) and the young shoots can be cooked like asparagus.
I'm going to forage for some today and will report back!
Anyone tried them before and have a good recipe? I would love to hear from you.
Okay, I'm off to get my boots wet... chat soon.

I'm back from a successful hunt, found some cleavers (good in salads) and lemon verbena too. I pulled some of the inner shoots of cattails out to do some recipe tests with. Sauteed them up with green onion, olive oil and garlic. Very exciting. And..... they were tasteless and kind of slimy. Damn. They maybe a good addition to soup to thicken as a starch. That'll be next on my test plan.

Other foretold uses for these versatile plants include; using pollen as flour (this is supposed to be amazing), grinding the roots up into a flour, steaming the roots. I sense new experiments in my future.
Please, if you are going to try this on your own try not to decimate cattail stocks. They are a very important little ecosystem. I would leave the roots at least.

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