11 Sep 2009

Foodie Fashionista

"Mum you are in fashion!” I laughed down the phone as we planned our blackberry picking fest for the weekend. “Very funny” she says when I tell her that foraging is the fashionable thing to do these days. After returning home from India our second weekend in the UK was to be spent with my family in Arundel. As is often the case, it revolves around food and a fix of country fresh air, and this time was no different. After having a quick rummage in our sprawling and over grown unofficial London garden, I returned to the kitchen triumphant with a bowl of blackberries and a jumper full of pears. Next door has a pear tree groaning with ready to pick fruit (and given it’s a Peckham School reform centre, I don’t think they have grand plans for preserving and baking), so I went scrumping!

Before my Indian adventure, I would have been far too prudish to scale the wall and nick the pears, but feeling the need for adventure I climbed the tree, leaned over the wall and stuffed as many pears into my jumper as it could hold.

So, with my renewed passion for seasonal and free English food, I suggested a little blackberry-ing... Mum’s always up for it. As a child we used to be lured to the park, to be told that we could play with the other kids once only when we had filled up a container with the finger staining bramble fruits from around the edge of the playing field. As much as we groaned, it was “one for me...one for the pot”... and fifteen years later, I am back in the field stretching to reach that perfect plump berry surrounded by thorns that is just out of reach.

Down at mums, her garden hedges were loaded with blackberries. I have never seen so many, so firm and so juicy, to the point where Jack even risked scratches from the thorns for a huge bowl of them. We barely left the front or back doors to pick at least a couple of kilos of blackberries. But now I have to think of more adventurous ways to serve them than as a breakfast of yoghurt and toasted almonds... or popping them like sweets, simply as they are.

Whilst blackberries will never be as good as my daily Indian mangoes, they score pretty highly and are free (unless you’re the mug who buys them in the supermarket... in season?)... So get picking, it is the fashion after all!

Related links:

Mango juice

Mango varieties

All about cherries

Last years bounty from the garden

1 comment:

Abi said...

hooray for scrumping!