AROUND THE WORLD IN THE EDIBLE GARDEN; Part 2 – Korea Inviting you to the second in a series of dinners from Malvik’s Edible Garden where we “forage” from different parts of the world! We don’t often eat oily food, but now and again its great and this meal was exceptional! From top left and clockwise: Ligularia fischeri Dystaenia takesimana (Giant Ulleung celery, seombadi) Aralia cordata (udo) (blanched for dipping and green for tempura) Phyteuma (should have been japonica, but I used nigra; svartvadderot) Allium victorialis subsp platyphyllum (victory onion; seiersløk) Aralia elata (devil’s walking stick, fandens spaserstokk) Hosta “Frances Williams” Aruncus dioicus (var kamtschaticus?) “Kneiffii” (a first for me!) (Goatsbeard, skogskjegg…I don’t recommend using a lot of this until we know more of its constituents) Hemerocallis dumortieri (flower shoots) (dayliliy, daglilje) Parasenecio hastatus (also the first time I ate this one and it was delicious, but I wouldn’t advise eating a lot: see here http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=23845) Matteuccia struthiopteris “Jumbo” (ostrich fern; strutseving) Taraxacum albidum and to the right of this: New Zealand spinach and Serratula coronata (also a first for me; the subspecies insularis is eaten in the Far East) Oplopanax horridus (North American species substituting Asian species Oplopanax japonicus or Oplopanax elatus) More information with the pictures!
I noticed yesterday that the ostrich ferns (strutseving) in the forest garden had put on a spurt despite the cold weather and were almost past the harvesting stage. This is the main disadvantage of this great vegetable. The harvesting window is very narrow. I quickly harvested some, taking care not to take more than 1/3 of the shoots. Together with Hablitzia tamnoides (Caucasian spinach), a bit of sea kale (strandkål), ramsons (ramsløk) and sand leeks (bendelløk) this made a delicious green pasta sauce. See the video before I picked below!
In June 2009, I was shown the only naturalised stand of victory onion (Allium victorialis) in south western Norway (away from Lofoten Islands – Vestvågøy – and Bodø area where there are several large populations, possibly a Viking introduction there which has subsequently spread). It’s also found in a damp woodland (which regularly floods in spring) along the Granvinselven (the Granvin river) in south west Norway (see http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=10658). It is suggested that the onion came to Granvin by way of the so-called Jektefart (a trade route based on dried fish from Lofoten to western Norway), was planted in a garden close to the site, subsequently naturalising from there!
In late October 2014, there was a major flood in western Norway (https://nn.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oktoberflaumen_i_2014) which caused a lot of damage including in Granvin. Over 200mm rain was recorded over 3 days in several places and up to 330mm! Although not a record, it had already rained a lot for most of October and the ground was already saturated when the worst rain happened…leading to a totally unexpected extreme event.
I heard rumours that the victory onion location had been severely impacted by this event, so when we drove past Granvin on the way back from the Nordic Permaculture Festival in Jondal, I took the opportunity to visit the location! This confirmed that the site is much reduced and there is visible signs of erosion including a dried up channel through the middle of the wooded island where the onion is found (the river was very low due to the drought). In addition, I was surprised to find that a path had been constructed between the river and the school. This is part of a major civil engineering work in Granvin to protect the low lying inhabited areas from flooding (see https://www.nve.no/nytt-fra-nve/nyheter-skred-og-vassdrag/granvin-har-fatt-betre-tryggleik-mot-flaum )
A video showing the completed works https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Keg-BSrAi94 shows aerial views of “victory onion island” between 0:56 – 1:24!
These works may lead to further erosion and destruction of the island….
Seeds were actually already ripe due to the hot summer and I therefore collected seed to safeguard the Granvin onion to be offered to Norwegian Seed Savers (KVANN) through our autumn catalogue which will be produced in October!
From my friend Geir Flatabø: “Jaunssen Gjestgjevarstad (Jaunssen Guest House) in Granvin has begun to harvest / use the onion, and makes pesto served to guests, with good feedback.”
A report from my 2009 “onion safari” to Lofoten, Tromsø and Granvin can be found here (in Norwegian with English comments) http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=18527 (some of this material ended up in my book Around the World in 80 plants))
An article in Norwegian about my first experiences with ostrich fern (strutseving). From the magazine of the Norwegian Useful Plants Society, Våre Nyttevekster (Our Useful Plants). Link to download below:
The rate of growth of Udo (Aralia cordata) from Japan is phenomenal in cool spring weather, even outgrowing Hablitzia tamnoides (Caucasian spinach)!
The first picture was taken by Christian Odberger during my permaveggies course and just two weeks later the plant is taller than me! The view is or less the same and the apple tree at the back is now in full bloom! The fern is ostrich fern.
Ostrich fern pie was the culinary high this week…made with cooked ostrich fern, Allium scorodoprasum, garlic, chili and standard quiche ingredients and a 100% whole grain barley / rye crust and home grown poppy seeds on top! It was delicious :)
It wasn’t planned at all (the best things aren’t), but our Swedish guests Christian Odberger and Dante Hellstrøm stayed over until Monday evening to dig up a few (!) must-have plants from my garden. Our “camper” Berit Børte also accepted the offer to stay over until Monday. Christian had brought grafting material with him and kindly volunteered to do a grafting course for us, so here are the pictures of Christian, Berit and my garden helper Lorna from Belfast grafting some 6 varieties of apple on to a wild apple tree, the seeds of which I collected at Warsash (on the solent), Hampshire UK some 13-14 years ago!! AND it was a beautiful afternoon too! See also http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=4617