WHAT CAN YOU FORAGE IN SOUTHERN ONTARIO CANADA? PART 2
These articles and videos are just a quick reviews of what else you can forage in Southern Ontario, Canada, from Spring and onward - and some, all year round…
What Can You Forage in Southern Ontario, Canada? Part 2
Foraging For Currants: late May - June, July, August,...
Yes, you can also forage gooseberries. If you are up in Northern Ontario, you should try our wild Blueberries - those are really good!
Recipes: https://www.elizabethskitchendiary.co.uk/vegan-blackcurrant-ripple-ice-cream/ https://www.veganrunners.org.uk/raw-black-currant-cheesecake/ https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/blackcurrant-jam
Foraging Black Mulberries: late June - July They start off green, white, red, then they turn dark. I have tried White Mulberries as well; they have a very subtle taste, and not as sweet as Black Mulberries. Growing: http://tropicofcanada.ca/plant-care/care-of-mulberry-deciduous/ https://www.incredibleseeds.ca/products/mulberry-seeds-black-mulberry?variant=32783229707 Recipes: https://lovecheflaura.com/mulberry-ice-cream/ https://veryveganval.com/2021/07/06/vegan-chai-mulberry-cake-with-cream-cheese-frosting/ http://blackwhitevivid.com/turkish-mulberry-lavender-syrup/
Foraging Raspberries: July - Aug, September We also have black cap and flowering raspberries here. I have found that this is a commonly over-picked fruit. Leaving some on the branch for others to enjoy would be a courteous gesture. Growing: http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/99-033.htm Recipes: https://rainbowplantlife.com/vegan-raspberry-crumble-bars/ https://dreenaburton.com/fresh-raspberry-pudding/ https://theloopywhisk.com/2017/06/15/raw-vegan-raspberry-cheesecake/ https://www.yummly.com/recipe/Avocado-Chocolate-Mousse-1562814
Foraging Saskatoon Berries: June - July If you cannot forage wild Blueberries, take heart; you may be able to forage Saskatoon Berries (also known as Service Berries, June Berries), which are just as nutritious. Growing:https://countrylivinginacariboovalley.com/growing-saskatoon-berries/ https://www.ediblewildfood.com/saskatoon.aspx Recipes:https://www.justinecelina.com/wild-saskatoon-berry-crumble/ https://delishably.com/fruits/The-Saskatoon-Berry https://www.norfolktourism.ca/appetizers/saskatoonberry-chutney/
Foraging Cherries: late Spring - early Summer
Wild cherries? Yes. Anything that is cultivated in home gardens, orchards, and farms can be spread abroad (via humans and animals) from seed, and grow over time, as long as the ground, water, environment, sun and seed conditions are right. But results can be lower to dismal, when it comes to GMOs that are engineered to not reproduce. You might also find them on abandoned homesteads, historical sites and abandoned orchards. I would freeze various fruits while they were in season, and then make a unique combined berry pie (with fruit that you may not forage / harvest together at the same time), using a graham cracker pie crust. You can also put this in a raw pie crust (see link below for The Raw Gourmet book). Growing: https://www.ontario.ca/page/black-cherry Recipes: https://cookieandkate.com/healthy-cherry-chocolate-cake/ http://nwedible.com/dark-cherry-chutney-canning-recipe/ https://thevegan8.com/vegan-chocolate-cherry-parisian-mousse/ https://www.thefullhelping.com/vegan-cherry-pie/ https://www.unconventionalbaker.com/recipes/gluten-free-vegan-cherry-pie/
Foraging Strawberries: June - July
Above image: wild strawberries in the field that they were picked, along with a common daisy. The ones that I foraged were much smaller compared to the store bought ones, but just as tasty. Info: https://eattheplanet.org/the-history-of-wild-strawberries/ Growing: http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/hgstrawb.htm#:~:text=Strawberries%20can%20be%20grown%20anywhere,the%20summer%20until%20late%20fall. https://www.almanac.com/plant/strawberries Recipes: https://www.familybites.ca/2010/06/strawberry-balsamic-and-goat-cheese-toasts.html https://hazelandcacao.com/raw-vegan-strawberry-cream-slice/
Foraging Watercress: Spring and onward
This massive patch of watercress was growing on a creekbank that also had a stream flowing down on them. The patch extended right down to the creek below. Growing: https://www.gardeningchannel.com/how-to-grow-watercress/ Recipes: https://www.watercress.co.uk/blog/vegetarian-fritters-dip
Foraging Broadleaf Plantain: - Spring & Onward
This is the tallest Broadleaf Plantain that I have ever seen. I usually see shorter ones, mostly trampled upon when they grow through sidewalk cracks. This one was shot while I was in a field. Info & Recipes: Broadleaf & Narrowleaf https://cwf-fcf.org/en/explore/gardening-for-wildlife/plants/edibles/edible-wild-and-not-so-wild-plants/plantain.html https://www.ediblewildfood.com/broadleaf-plantain.aspx https://www.fourseasonforaging.com/blog/2021/2/25/broadleaf-plantain-no-its-not-a-banana https://www.canadianoffthegrid.com/little-weed-one-of-the-most-useful-medicines-plantain/ http://liferewilded.co.uk/vegan-eggs-from-weeds/ https://www.wildedible.com/wild-food-guide/plantain https://www.ediblewildfood.com/plantain-salad.aspx
Foraging Purslane: Summer
Purslane is a nutritious annual succulent, that is tasty, both raw or cooked. Just the other day, I walked by a look a-like that definitely was not edible. It looked like this. You might consider growing many of these nutritional weeds from seed or from cuttings, since they can grow in areas where they can be tread upon by humans and animals. They can also be found growing in your garden and on your lawn, and as plantain, in the cracks of sidewalks.
https://dengarden.com/gardening/portulaca https://www.fourseasonforaging.com/blog/2018/7/24/purslane-identification Look A-like: https://www.po.flowerscanadagrowers.com/our-products/1552/portulaca/oleracea Growing: https://www.hobbyfarms.com/6-tips-for-growing-purslane-on-purpose/ https://www.gardenersnet.com/vegetable/how-to-grow-purslane-weed.htm Recipes: https://sharonpalmer.com/2014-08-25-sicilian-purslane-salad/ https://www.fromachefskitchen.com/purslane-chimichurri/
Gingko Biloba, Maidenhair:
Foraging Gingko Biloba, Maidenhair Leaves: Spring - Summer Nuts: Late October - Early November The leaves are best picked when they are younger. Dry them at home for tea. I have yet to try the nuts from this tree. Nuts: https://www.seriouseats.com/the-nasty-bits-gingko-nuts Growing: https://landscapeontario.com/ginko-biloba-maidenhair-tree Recipes:
Foraging Grapes: Late April & Late Summer - Early Fall
Various types. River grapes (pictured above), are sweet and tart, and can be found growing on vines all around. Many people make stuffed grape leaves from this type. Growing: https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/askagardener/when-to-plant-grapes-and-what-type/ https://www.almanac.com/plant/grapes Recipes:
Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves. This link has a video):
Watch Out With Grapes, Berries, etc.!
As they say, ‘If you don’t know it, don’t eat it.’
Before you eat the foods that you find outside, I would recommend using 3 or more resources (online ID apps, detailed foraging books with coloured images, over black & white images (those are not as helpful), to identify exactly what that item is. And with berries and mushrooms, I would use as many resources that I can find. And with mushrooms, if you don’t know 100%, I would seek out the help of experts.
Emergency Reference: besides 911
Poison Control, Ontario, Canada:
Edible Berries, Ontario:
Book links and other resources here:
* Important Tip: Just because you know someone who has eaten a grape, berry, mushroom, etc., and has not been affected negatively by them, that does NOT mean that item is not poisonous! With many wild edibles, there are look alikes, that are inedible! And sometimes, they grow right around the edible ones.
Foraging Apples: Late Summer / Fall
Ambrosia, Empire, Royal Gala, Honeycrisp, McIntosh, Red Delicious, Spartan, Fuji, Ida Red, Crispin/Mutsu, Golden Delicious, Cortland, Northern Spy, as well as red, green and yellow crabapples,... See the two links below for even more varieties. For recipes, the last two links, you can even substitute Granny Smith for crabapples. Info: https://myaltonaforest.wordpress.com/2017/10/03/wild-apples-in-altona-forest/ http://yougrowgirl.com/foraging-free-apples/ Growing: http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/aplrec.htm https://canadianfoodfocus.org/in-season/whats-in-season-apples/ Recipes: https://www.alive.com/recipe/raw-licious-cinnamon-apple-pie/ https://biancazapatka.com/en/apple-blondies-caramel-bars/ https://buildyourbite.com/best-vegan-apple-crisp/ https://holycowvegan.net/vegan-apple-pie-pull-apart-bread/ https://shortgirltallorder.com/vegan-apple-pie-bars https://www.marthastewart.com/315067/frisee-and-green-apple-salad-with-goat-c https://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/november-2007-goat-cheese-and-caramelized-apple-toasts https://deviliciouslyraw.com/2015/08/12/rawvegan-apple-pie/ Raw Apple Pie: The Raw Gourmet, by Namoi Shannon. I have made a strawberry pie and an apple pie, and much more, from these recipes, and my dinner companions and I couldn't tell that it was raw.
Foraging Pears: Late Summer / Fall
A variety of pears can be found here: Bosc, Anjou, Bartlett,... In 2020 and 2021, I saw quite a bit of damaged and/or diseased pear trees on my foraging travels. Same with some of the apple trees. Growing: http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/11-047.htm https://www.ontario.ca/foodland/food/pears Recipes: https://www.veganricha.com/vegan-pear-upside-down-cake/ https://minimalistbaker.com/easy-baked-pears/ https://simple-veganista.com/rustic-apple-pear-crisp/ https://www.daisybeet.com/healthy-apple-pear-crisp-vegan-gluten-free/ I'm a vegetarian, so I included vegetarian and vegan recipes here. And, many of us do not want gelatin and other unwanted ingredients in our desserts, etc. Many desserts, snacks, etc., include gelatin, such as: Jello, mousse (see Cherries, above, for a vegan choc cherry mousse recipe link), strawberry tarts, and used as glaze on other products. I believe more companies should be transparent, and honestly label their products suitable for vegetarians, and suitable for vegans. But, you can always rewrite a recipe to suit your own taste and nutritional requirements.
In the 1990s, a few friends shared books on food combining,... I walked into a used book shop and stumbled upon: Blatant Raw Food Propaganda, by Joe Alexander. I have enjoyed many recipes from The Raw Gourmet, by Namoi Shannon and from these sites: Rawfood.com (Sunfood.com) Rawfoods.com I thrive whenever I consume mostly raw. In fact, whenever I stray too far from daily raw energy for too long, my health declines. Living on a lengthened diet of stress, energy drinks, loads of sugar and junk food, excessive caffeine,... I succumbed to diabetes, and a load of declined health issues. The damage was done before I turned vegetarian again (I tried it for a year, while in high school), in November or December, 2017. Things take a while to repair, when you're a junk food vegetarian. Didn't get to forage? Why not pick your own, on Ontario farms: https://www.pickyourown.org/CNONharvestcalendar.htm Or buy from local farmers: https://www.ontario.ca/foodland/page/availability-guide There is so much more that you can forage for, in Spring/Sumer and onward, (and some things, you can forage all year round), here in Southern Ontario, Canada! Part 3 is on the horizon, as well as videos of walking in the woods, in nature (no music, no talking, just nature sounds), as well as upcoming Inktober nature drawings (for my upcoming children’s foraging book), and other art. I hope that I have inspired you to get out there for the first time, or get back out there again, and enjoy yourself in nature! Thanks for reading & watching. Sincerely, Susan L RiverWood.Gallery Sign up for a monthly newsletter, at: email@example.com Subject: Monthly Newsletter (I will not lend or sell your E-mail info). Foraging Books: A foraging E-book .pdf will be available, after I post future blogs of what you can forage here. Also, I have been working on a children's foraging book. Subscribe to the monthly Newsletter to get notified. Southern Ontario: http://www.archives.gov.on.ca/en/maps/counties/region.aspx https://firstname.lastname@example.org,-80.1757429,8z