Category Archives: Drying

Cornelian Cherries and Polish Olives in Trondheim

I’ve long had a Cornelian cherry (Cornus mas) in the garden without a partner. The oldest is maybe 20 years old. I’ve several times tried to propagate more plants but they always died. I finally got a second plant going thanks to a gardening friend Alvilde who didn’t want hers anymore, but still no fruit, maybe it was a clone of the first one? This spring I took a few sprigs of flowering twigs from a couple of plants at the botanical garden at Ringve and put them next to my two plants. It did the trick as my two bushes were full of fruit this year, but only a few fruit on one of the bushes turned red and probably weren’t fully ripe.  Perhaps we’ll make Polish Olives with them?  It would be nice with a home grown olive surrogate? See Szczepaniak et al. (2019).

I finally got a good crop on my two plants, but only one of the two bushes had ripe fruit.

The bushes at Ringve, which were in a warmer and much sunnier spot than in my garden, were, on the other hand, laden with ripe fruit!

At Ringve Botanical Garden in Trondheim the bushes were laden with berries. These bushes are located in a much more sunny spot than in my garden. Good to have confirmed that they can give a crop in Trondheim
At Ringve.

Although sour tasting raw, I was intrigued to see what they would taste like dried. My favourite dried fruit are sour cherries. Although not as good as those, I enjoyed the taste and they will this winter be part of my late winter dried fruit mixes that I eat every morning for breakfast once the fresh apples are finished.

Preparing the fruit for drying. These will be used later in the winter with a mulltitude of other dried fruit. I love the tart taste of these! The seed will be offered to members of Norwegian Seed Savers!
Dried Cornelian Cherries

There are many varieties of cornelian cherry bred for bigger fruits, there are also pear shaped fruit varieties and yellow cultivars. There are also a number of ornamental varieties, such as the wonderful variegated form I once saw laden with fruit in the Oxford Botanical Garden (see the pictures below).
´Elegantnyj´, ´Jalt´, ´Kijevskij´, ´Lukjanovskij´, ´Vydubeckij´ are Russian in origin; ´Devin´, ´Olomoucky, ´Ruzynsky´, ´Sokolnicky´, ´Titus´ are from Czechoslovakia and Slovakia; ´Joliko´ and ´Fruchtal´ are Austrian and ‘Ntoulia 1’ and ‘Ntoulia 2’ are Greek.<
There are also partially self-fertile varieties.
Cornus mas has been cultivated commercially for centuries in the Caucasus and Central Asia. Turkey has today an important Cornelian cherry industry.
‘Kasanlaker’ is a large fruited cultivar which is available from nurseries in Western Europe.

I remember on a visit to Scandinavia’s oldest forest garden at Holma in Southern Sweden being shown a large Cornus mas in the centre of  the city Lund on 1st September 2017! Here’s a picture of various forest gardeners harvesting the fruit (the tree was full):

Reference
Oskar M. Szczepaniak, Kobus‑Cisowska, J.,    Kusek, W. and Przeo, M.  2019. Functional properties of Cornelian cherry (Cornus mas L.): a comprehensive review.  European Food Research and Technology. 245:2071–2087

October Chantarelles

This week,  somewhere in Trøndelag, we stumbled on a large number of chantarelles (kantarell). The aim of the trip was to pick winter chantarelles (traktkantarell) for drying. Imagine our surprise to find a huge number of chantarelles. I’ve never found so many so late in the year! There were many winter chantarelles too, but we decided to pick them next week!
Walking up a very steep slope and suddenly this was the view in front of us:

The final haul ready to dry!

Leather

I neither use sugar nor do I have a freezer. My favourite way of preserving fruit is drying and the quickest way of drying fruit in an oven is by making fruit leather…simply boil the fruit to sterilise and mashing as you boil, then pour into an oven tray and dry for a few hours at about 40C!
Have just finished a batch of redcurrants (rips) and raspberries (bringebær). The raspberries were both wild red raspberries, an old Norwegian yellow (gulbringebær) and a cultivar “White Russian”

See last year’s blog on raspberry / bilberry leather here: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=13187

12th August Added pictures of leather made from cloudberries, bilberries and wild raspberries!

Pea and broad bean diversity

I always grow many different types of peas and broad beans (favas) (erter og bondebønner). Peas (Pisum sativum) rarely if ever cross so I grow them very close to each other. Broad beans do cross, but active selection I do manage to keep several varieties true to type (such as crimson flowered with its distinctive beautiful lime green beans ).They’ve been lying around the house on windowsills drying for two months and I finally got round to sorting them, saving some for seed, and saving extra of good ones for Norwegian Seed Savers’ yearbook. The rest I just mix to make mixed bean falafel and pea soup later in the winter!

Apple moon weekend

At the apple moon coring and cutting apples is a must..processed a couple of hundred apples today, now drying over the wood stove and in the oven. It’s a it more urgent than normal as -8C when I finally managed to harvest them was a bit too much and they won’t be able to be stored long this year (all have brownish blotches on the outside), a bit like the supermoon picture I just took, see below ;)

P1800366 P1800374 P1800367

 

 

P1800358

Worcesterleather and dried Aronia berries

The best October berry here is a berry that I have concluded in the past is Worcesterberry, although I had received it as Jostaberry, see the following blog post from 2015, I http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=2391 (it is thorny which Jostaberry is not).
During the PDC course at the weekend, the students helped harvest these berries in the garden..these are now drying in the oven for fruit leather, together with Aronia berries…
221117:  
I’ve been eating my Worcesterberries daily with breakfast almost every day….yesterday, I harvested the last ones at -10C!! Added video of the worcestermarbles!

Around the world in 80 Alliums

Yesterday, I gave my first talk about my (second) love of onions (alternative title All you wanted to know about Alliums but were afraid to ask!)….fittingly in the nursery with I believe the best selection of Alliums being sold as foodplants in Europe if not the world , my friend Aiah Noack’s Naturplanteskolen just outside of Copenhagen. Aiah is the author of an excellent book Fantasilater (fantasy salads), only in Danish so far which also includes several Alliums. My book Around the World in 80 plants mentions some 45 Allium species!
In a little over 2 hours I covered about 66 of the world’s cold hardy onions and over 80 if we include cultivars and subspecies…
Other onion related topics were also covered, such as “grow your own fireworks and Xmas decorations”, “Allium as a dancing partner”, the Allium microphone (Alliomike) and the garlic scape armband to keep “wild” animals, trolls and mosquitos away (Transylvanian Garlic keeps vampires away too)… It was a fun afternoon with yet another great group of edimentals fans! ;) 

The video  is of one of my pictures about drying Persian Shallots with a shot of my drying racks over my wood burning stove. Someone noticed that you could actually see heat rising through the racks!!!! (a wood burning stove was on behind the projector) ;)