Herbaloo[book]Review: Wildly Nourished

(c) wildly nourished - book cover

Wildly Nourished, A family guide to wild edible greens, flowers, roots and seeds

by Leaf, herbalist and wild edibles expert in Belgium

Published on April 8, 2013

I first met Leaf on twitter, following her to read more of her whimsical and very informative posts.  I have since become a fan of her blog and now, her book.  Leaf searches out wild edibles in Belgium, Europe where she has been practicing as an herbalist for over 10 years.  Her new book, Wildly Nourished is an amazing resource that I am delighted to share with you!  As a quick read, you could pick it up in the morning, and be wild-crafting confidently for your lunch.  Then use one of her many intriguing recipes to satisfy your hungry foraging soul!

(c) wildy nourished - pic harvest basket

The book begins with tips on the ins-and-outs of harvesting wild weeds: what time of day, where on the Earth, what to look for, and how to harvest responsibly.  Then she supplies a great list of 36 plant profiles, which can easily be used here in the US.  (oh the beauty of our modern melting pot…)  What I appreciate most about her plant profiles is the list of various common names from around the globe.  I’m a lingo geek, and to learn that Yarrow is also referred to as plumajillo (“little feather”) I gave this book a dedicated space on my list of favorites.  It also found a place in my harvest basket, since it’s a great guide to have on you while out searching.  Her pictures are very clear and it makes for a nice supplement to a field guide.

I trust her info as an herbalist and wild forager.  I like that she regularly eats very common weeds that are too often under appreciated.  The recipes listed in the second half of the book sound sooo yummy – and lots of unique beverages, which I don’t see often enough.  I love that she uses sun tea instead of water in her recipes!  “All of the recipes are tested and approved by…not only kids [but also] family and friends and guests.”  I’d like to be a test-guest someday and try first-hand one of Leaf’s wild kitchen meals!  In the mean time I’ll be making ‘Sorrel-Avocado Dip’ with Yarrow…yum!

(c) wildy nourished - leaf chickweed wig

Leaf is pretty laid back with her recipes.  She assures you of your own moxie, and gives you the confidence that foraging is easy, not intimidating.  She suggests you make your own variations to her recipes, now that you’ve got a base knowledge and familiarity with these specific wild plants.

The one piece I wish was included is how exactly you use Japanese Knotweed Juice as a lemon juice substitute – it was mentioned in a recipe, but I couldn’t find another reference on it (maybe I missed it??).  Looks like I’ll have to ask the little [twitter] birdy to tell me.  (Update ~ Rereading the section on Japanese Knotweed, I see Leaf does actually mention its use as a lemon substitute.  I’ve also been answered via social media from Leaf herself ~ juice the young plant…Yes, it’s that simple, lol.  Again, foraging and using wild edibles is easy!)

You can order this wonderful resource {here} on Leaf’s website, as well as read more about Leaf and her book, Wildly Nourished.  There are a few bonuses (!!!) included with your purchase, too ~ certainly worth the $24.  You can also follow her on facebook and twitter (@wildplantforage ).

Happy Reading!

~ from your herbal book worm,  Herbaloo ~

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2 thoughts on “Herbaloo[book]Review: Wildly Nourished

  1. In answer to your question: You can use Japanese knotweed as a lemon substitute either cooked and mashed in pies or juiced. Thanks for the lovely review!

    • Thank you Leaf ~ You are a wealth of knowledge! Japanese Knotweed is practicing/gifting his medicine to me apparently… Since I missed the small shoots of the plant growing in my Urban Garden space this Spring, I will wait for the roots this Fall – I had never thought to dig it up then.
      ~ Herbaloo

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