Sunday, 27 January 2013

Aaannnnd......first foraged meal of 2013

Open the fridge and see what sad things need using up to add to your free wild garlic and nettles.  Having 'foraged' within the fridge as well as along the river bank go forward thus:
Heat a little olive oil and sweat off a sliced onion (mine was red) and a bunch of slighly limp spring onions.
Add plently of freshly ground black pepper, 1tsp dried basil, 1tsp dried oregano / marjoram (they are pretty much the same thing aren't they?) and about 0.5tsp dried sage.  You may need a little splosh more oil at this point as the herbs will suddenly soak it up.
Slice the last handful of cherry toms in half and add.  Give everything a good stir each time you add stuff - I don't actually need to say that do I?
Rinse your wild garlic and nettles well and seperate the two if you only had one bag on you to forage with, as I did.
Reserve a few of the smaller leaves of the garlic and roughly chop the rest.  Add to the pot.
Slice a few mushrooms (I used 5 chestnut ones and 3/4 of a white one that had randomly been left in the fridge - that was deffo the Chap and not me!) and add to the pot.  Cover to gently cook down whilst you get the beans.
Open mahoosive tin of cannellini beans.  I got 3 tins on my last Approved Food order for the princely sum of £1.20, ie 40p each and only when they were delivered did I realise they were the big 800g / 480g drained size!!  Absolute bargain!!  Drain and rinse well then add to the pot and stir some more.
Add 100ml dry white wine.  TBH ours was just a cheap bottle from Aldi I got to cook with.  Cover again (after some more of your finest stirring action, natch) and let simmer for 10+ mins. 
We weren't actually that hungry yet so I let it go for about 10/15 mins then turned it off.  Do stir every so often whilst it's simmering so it doesn't catch or stick.
Once you're ready to eat stir in your washed and picked over nettles - get rid of as much stalk as possible is my personal advice, they can be a little on the tough hairy side!  Add the reserved garlic too and wilt them both in for 3-5ish mins.
Taste and season; you will need salt as the beans soak everything up but beware of adding it earlier as it can apparently make beans go hard.

We had ours topped with a salmon fillet and a handful of mussels each which I did quickly in a little water and a splosh more wine with a few of the wild garlic leaves in too.  Leave the fish off to make it even more frugal and veggie/vegan if you make sure the wine is. 
Nom for free!!!  Well - kind of.  :-)


  1. Sounds good to me. Two posts in a few days? Steady on old girl!

    1. I love wild garlic and it was so nice to get the first taste of the year.
      There's another post up already!! Lol - I'm getting better at keeping up with them, at least at the weekends. :-)


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