The hunter gatherer instinct is prevalent in us all, even if evolution has chipped away at its core. Unfortunately we are more inclined to battle for a bargain at the supermarket, than hunt for our dinner. Although, what could be better than collecting the fruits of natures gardens and cooking up a feast with your beautiful and completely free harvest?
The trouble these days, is knowing exactly what is safe and of course tasty to eat – no one wants that dreaded ‘tummy bug’ or to kill off your fellow foodie friends, let alone torture your palette. A solution to this dilemma is a Food Safari Wild Food in a Day event.
Set in the stunning greenery of the Suffolk countryside – The bountiful Henham Estate to be exact – you will be lead by wild food expert Jacky Sutton-Adam on a foraging expedition into the leafy larder that is the estate.
Jacky instils in you the kind of confidence, enthusiasm and know how, to just dig in and sample what you would ordinarily dare not, even the children amongst the party were game to carefully pick and taste what turned out to be highly nutritious and surprisingly delicious natural herbs and roughage found amongst the common nettle. Respect for the countryside, picking techniques, recipe ideas and taste analysis were all par for the very welcome course.
From the rambling country estate, we then set off to venture onto the Blyth Estuary and sample the sweet and salty offerings of the shore line, before our final stop at the Anchor pub restaurant in Walberswick.
After being meted and greeted we tucked into what can only be labelled as a ‘grand feast’ of foraged fodder and delicious local produce; samphire in gram pancakes, fresh buttered asparagus, sea cabbage, hop shoot tempura, chicken of the woods risotto, barbequed perfectly pink new season lamb, elderflower panacotta with gooseberry compote, and ripe cheeses, all accompanied by fine beers and wine.
My, what a banquet of sublime flavours we had. The beautiful setting, delightful and knowledgeable hosts added to what was a fantastically enjoyable and very insightful day.
For those seeking to learn, lunch and gain insight into the local produce and producers within Suffolk, I can heartily recommend Food Safari days. Other events include Wild Meat in a Day, Catch and Cook and Free Range Pork in a Day, including butchery demonstrations and making your own sausages – now where’s my diary…