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Pascal Baudar  Author, wild food research, traditional food preservation methods, culinary alchemist, entomophagy. Naturalist - Los Angeles.


Coming in February 2018! and you can pre-order! - Lots of boozy stuff - more than 300 pages of it. Get ready to extract wild yeast, make molasses from fruits and berries, find unusual sugar sources and brew simple sodas, wild beers, primitive wines, herbal meads and other boozy concoctions that you could not even classify with what nature has to offer, your own native plants garden or even store-bought.

From Vermont, to Arizona, Oregon, California, Colorado, Belgium, France, New York and beyond! East Coast, West Coast and Europe!

Heck, you could probably use this book on a new discovered earth-like planet and make delicious drinks by following the techniques in the book.

Follow link in profile to pre-order
#beers #sodas #herbalism #booze #wines #meads #naturalsodas #fermentation #wildfermentation #wildfoodlove #wildbeers #primitivewines #cookingwithbeers #wildyeast #boozyconcoctions #drinks #cocktails #mixology #wilddrinks

The gathering for edible seeds/grains continues, September to October is definitely what I call the seeds time and they are so plentiful locally. To the untrained eyes, the environment may look like a desert but it couldn't be further from the truth - it's a giant field of nutritious seeds. You need to gather them before the rainy season.

Every morning, I spend a couple of hours hiking and collected some plentiful seeds. Today I collected some crabgrass seeds as well as sedge and nettle seeds. I don't need a lot, they're mostly used for my culinary research but in case of "need", it's good to know they're there and which ones are edible.

Did you know that crabgrass, now considered an obnoxious weed was actually an ancient crop and that sedge seeds have been found on Neanderthal mortar. Wild seeds are part of our cultural and culinary DNA.

Aside from food, nettle seeds are also very medicinal by helping the thyroid and reducing excess weight. Throughout history, nettle sees have also been used as anti-poison. I used them last time when I had food poisoning and it did wonder.
I use these seeds in stews, soups but also in condiments like my pickled wild seeds. Oh...and in my wild seeds crackers as well!
Now we view them as "weeds" and spray them with chemicals. We don't realize that we are alive today because our ancestors had an intimate relationship with their environment and knew which seeds were edible. Locally, most of them are also non-native (all mustards, wild radish, grasses, etc...) so it's another way to contribute to the local flora by removing the seeds. If native seeds are collected (always in moderation), I save 20 to 30% to plant. By using my little home nursery, I can guarantee that I end up planting more than I take.
As a tip, before you start foraging grass or sedge seeds, you need to familiarize yourself with a fungal contamination called "Ergot" which can be quite toxic (or psychotropic). You can google "Ergot grains fungus" and look at images. My seeds are always inspected and if I have any doubt, the whole batch is thrown away.
Tomorrow I'll go on another hike collecting Curly Dock, wild fennel seeds and black mustard seeds

Fermented (raw) super hot sauce with seasonal wild edibles, berries, fruits and seeds.

Early fall is when the habaneros are readily available at the local Hispanic market and I can't resist to do my favorite fermented hot sauce. It varies each year depending on the wild food available but it always ends up super yummy with smoky accents. By the way, the heat does reduce with fermentation. There is no precise recipe so here is a rough guideline:

60 to 70% habaneros
20% seasonal wild edibles
5 to 10% smoked chile morita (chili pods)
5 to 10% additional peppers (I used Thai this time)
2 tbps Chia or plantain seeds (mucilaginous instead of Xantham gum)
6 garlic cloves or more
Couple of prickly pears juice to add also some mucilaginous qualities and fruity flavors.

This year, the seasonal wild edibles were: dandelion, watercress, purslane. I also added some manzanita berries powder (3 tablespoons for sugary/fruity accents. I also added one carrot (chopped)

The habeneros, garlic and wild edibles are chopped and salt added (1 tablespoon per pound so the sauce ends up salty as well). Massaged for 10 minutes with gloves. Then I add the smoked chili morita (chopped), the seeds, prickly pear juice and manzanita powder. Good for nature btw, all the greens are non-native and invasive.

Everything is mixed for 2-3 minutes then placed into a quart jar. Then, using a handheld immersion blender inside the jar, I turn everything into a paste. I may add a bit of a strong brine too if it's not liquid enough (1 1/2 tablespoon salt for 2 cups water). Screw the lid but not too tight. 5 to 7 times a day, I close the lid tight and shake the jar for a minute or so (so you don't get mold on top). I ferment it for a week at room temperature for a week then place in the fridge. No rules as to when you want to eat it. I've aged this kind of hot sauce for 6 months and it was delicious. For people who like vinegar-based hot sauce, feel free to add vinegar after the fermentation if you want...why not.

I have a basic recipe like that in my book "The New Wildcrafted Cuisine" on page 299. Available on amazon

#wildfermentation #fermentation #herbalism #wildfood #foraging #chefs #hotsauce

Collecting broadleaf plantain (Plantago major) seeds - basically a super food - 100 grams of plantain containing approximately the same amount of vitamin A as a large carrot.
I like to steam or blanch the leaves to make a fake seaweed. Wikipedia says that the seeds are so small that they are tedious to gather, but they can be ground into a flour substitute or extender.
The reality is that the seeds are super easy to collect. I pick up the long seed pods when dried then just roll the long stems with seeds between my hands, all the seeds and husks are collected in a bowl. Use a fine strainer, the seeds can go through but the husk won't.

In 10 minutes of foraging I collected enough to end up with one cup of seeds (called psyllium) -
Psyllium is mainly used as a food thickener (acts like chia seeds), reduce cholesterol and relieve symptoms of both constipation and mild diarrhea.

I also use the seeds in my pickled seeds condiment. One cup of psyllium is probably worth $40.00 in a health store.

Good for the environment too, plantain is non-native in Southern California.

It's one of the 100 edible seeds I collect for culinary uses and I know of another 120 that I still have to discover - the fun never stops.

#edibleseeds #wildfoodlove #seeds #foraging #cooking #chef

Seawater fermentation #2 - Spicy sauerkraut

I basically made a traditional sauerkraut using homemade salt from dehydrated sea water.

Homemade sea salt: First the sea water is filtered then placed into a large pot. Bring to boil and continue until you start seeing a white mush forming at the bottom. Turn down the heat and continue until the salt mush as the consistency of wet sand.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F - Remove the salt from the pot and lay it flat on a large tray. Place the tray in the oven and every 15 to 20 minutes of so, stir the salt using a fork. It's very important or you will get a solid mass of salt. You should end up with a very fine salt - taste like the sea in a good way.


Next, do the usual and shred your cabbage. 2 pounds of shredded cabbage should fill a quart jar when done.

Sprinkle salt on it, add the chili flakes, then massage if forcefully for about 10 minutes, or until enough juice is released to form a brine and completely cover the cabbage.

HOW MUCH SALT??? Usually I use 3 tablespoons of salt for every 5 pound of vegetables and if necessary to add some brine to make sure it covers the cabbage, the brine is 1 tablespoon salt for every 2 cups.

This didn't work with my homemade sea salt and I had to double the amount to get the same salinity (based on taste). I ended up using 5-6 tablespoons of homemade salt for 5 pounds of vegetable and a brine of 2 tablespoons homemade salt for 2 cups of water.

Everything was then placed into a quart jar with a pasteurized stone on top to keep it under the brine. Close the lid but not too tight so fermentation gases an escape. Using a clean spoon, I push down the ingredients 2 or 3 times a day to make sure they stay under the brine. The fermentation already started overnight.

#wildfermentation #fermentation #sauerkraut #seawater #wildfoodlove #chef #naturalfood #fermented

Seawater Fermentation - Mixed Vegetables

I'm going to test and taste different techniques of fermentation using seawater. To verify any changes of flavors between seawater and regular sea-salt brine, I'm making 2 of the same ferments to I can compare.

The first test will be on a simple mixed vegetables ferment. Quart jar - California bay leaf (1/3 leaf), 1 carrot, 2 clove garlic, cauliflower, jalapenos, one Thai pepper, red pepper, a bit of chili flakes - very simple ferment.

The seawater was foraged in Mendocino - Northern California. Extremely pure (no pollution) water to start with. It was then filtered (using coffee filter) and pasteurized (boiled for at least 10 minutes). On average, seawater in the world's oceans has a salinity of about 3.5% (35 g/L) and the regular brine I use for this type of ferment is around 2% (1 tablespoon salt for 2 cups of water). To reduce the salinity of the seawater I used a ratio of around 60% seawater and 40% regular water.
The usual method was then used, the chopped vegetables are placed in a jar, the brine (seawater + regular water) is added. I make sure the vegetable are under the brine then screw the lid but not too tight so fermentation gases can escape.

2 or 3 times a day, I make sure the vegetables are still under the brine and, just my own little way of doing things, I like to close the lid and shake a bit the jar for a few seconds then unscrew the lid a little (and verify again that vegetable are still under brine). I'll let it ferment for probably 4-5 days and see how it compares to my other regular ferment.

Next projects...using salt from dehydrated seawater to make a sauerkraut and making a kimchi-like ferment by soaking the vegetables in pure seawater first.
Fun :) Will update on progress and taste.

UPDATE ALREADY... My 2% brine with regular salt was much saltier than my seawater/regular water mix. In fact my 2% brine tasted exactly like the salinity in my pure seawater - so I replaced the brine in my seawater ferment with seawater.
This can happen due to the location of a large river or source of fresh water nearby. Tasting is important
#wildfermentation #seawater #fermentation #chef #foodpreservation

Forest Infused Homemade Butter.
I had some organic cream left from my workshop this weekend then it hit me!!! What about taking the usual ingredients that I use to make my cold infusion with water. infuse the cream instead and make butter with it!

Sounded like fun and guess what! It truly works great! It the best butter I ever made and it taste like my local forest.True flavors of the local terroir.
I have to work out a precise recipe, right now I kind of did it instinctively and used the following:

Forest hay (mix of dried grass, wild oats, dried mustard)
1 candy cap mushroom
crushed oyster mushrooms
manzanita berries (30 or so - crushed too)
Wright's cudweed
Tad of yarrow and California sagebrush
Water mint

Infused for 24hrs in the cream then turned into butter using my hand-crank butter churner.

The result is actually quite mild but fantastic, you definitely get hints of my forest - mushrooms and bitter quality, hints of curry as well and refreshing from the mint.

I know I can improve the blend but I wanted to find out if the concept was workable and it is... Yay...lots of butter fun incoming.
Tons more crazy ideas (432 pages of it) in my book "The new wildcrafted cuisine" on amazon.

#butter #milk #cream #forest #chef #wildfoodlove

Pure - Priceless Seawater from Mendocino (Northen California). Came back Friday from a trip to Northern California to collect sea water and learn a bit about the local environment (seaweeds, forest, etc...). Basically a 3 days trip to collect seawater to be used in fermentation experiments.
It's a sad statement about Los Angeles but frankly, I would not touch sea water in my area or any located at or below San Francisco due to pollution. What probably amazed me the most if the fact that pristine sea water actually TASTED good - maybe too salty to swallow but still, you could feel it was pure and fresh - hardly any smell at all (like we have locally). What was supposed to be a casual trip to Northern California ended up being quite an adventure to say the least. The plan was to hook up with friend and local herbalist Alexandra Hudson In Berkeley and from there go to an organic farm in Mendocino county - stay there, collect some water and explore the local area then come back. I'll probably write several pages in my next book about the adventure of collecting water there, LOL! but all I can say for now that I only managed to get one gallon back to Los Angeles and without Alexandra's ability to "make things go right" and organize things, I'll probably still be stranded somewhere and eating edible weeds on my slow way back to Los Angeles.
This seawater is truly pristine (even checked the recent radiation water tests online for those who worry about that), I'm totally in love with it. I actually consider sea water a living thing which, from my personal experience, can go bad in terms of flavors and smell if you leave in too long in the sun or unattended at room temperature for a long period. My usual course of action is to filter the water as soon as possible to remove any unwanted critters (tiny animals, small rocks, sharks and so on) then pasteurize it. The water is then placed in the fridge if used within a week or otherwise is kept frozen until ready to use. That way the water won't develop off flavors (and taste like our sea water in L.A.). Seawater has a salinity of approximately 3.5% (A fermenting brine is usually around 2%).

Now that the fire is gone, I can go back to making some cheese! This is one of the farmer cheeses I'll make at my Creative Cheeses Workshop: Sweet While Clover / Garlic Cheese.

Sweet white clover is still very abundant right now and you're also helping nature as it is quite invasive (though the bees love it too). From Wikipedia: White sweet clover is native to Europe and Asia. It was introduced to North America in the 17th century for cattle forage purposes and is now widespread throughout Canada and the United States, where it has become invasive and can outcompete native plant species. White sweet clover can grow up to 2 meters in height and can produce abundant amounts of seeds that readily float and disperse in water. This has allowed the plant to colonize natural habitat such as riparian areas all across much of North America.

In large amount, the plant has anticoagulant properties (And so are a few products/spices we use in the kitchen such as ginger, raw garlic, grapefruit and so on). In culinary quantity, it is negligible and the flavors are just awesome - herby, hints of vanilla, cinnamon and other more complex flavors.

Mixed with cheese, it truly create a unique flavor with a lot of grass qualities. I always say, it taste like nature, the way it's supposed to be.
Come join me and let's have tons of creative culinary fun!

Sunday September 10
Fullerton Arboretum
Bacon Pavilion Classroom
1 to 4 PM
Link in profile.

Sometimes super simple is awesome. Like this one:
Prosciutto di Parma
Farmer cheese with tad of chives
Pickled wild seeds (various foraged mustard seeds, plantain, nettle, lambsquarter, wild amaranth and a few more).
One sprig of fresh thyme
Water mint leaves
Crushed peppercorn
Good for the environment too, most of the seeds are from locally invasive plants and the native ones such as black sage seeds are from my native plants garden.

Come join me for my Creative Cheese Workshop and let's have tons of culinary fun!

Sunday September 10
Fullerton Arboretum
Bacon Pavilion Classroom
1 to 4 PM
Sign up link on profile

#cheese #prosciutto #wildfoodlove #seeds #foodies #foodpics

Let's redefine what you can do with homemade farmer cheese. Work in progress for my upcoming Creative Cheese Making Workshop
Today is all about sweetness and the delicious possibilities are truly infinite, even more if you are a food preserver and have a large pantry.

Everything was ridiculously yummy! Mix of foraged ingredients, wild preserves and store-bought items. Crackers were made with acorn flour, wheat sourdough and wild seeds.

Homemade farmer cheese, fresh raspberries, basil, sweet white clover, fermenting prickly pears wine.

Wild currant jam, farmer cheese, raw honey, sweet white clover

Blueberries, farmer cheese, infused blueberry vinegar, fresh thyme, basil, maples syrup

Farmer cheese, foraged fig, pinyon pine syrup, sweet basil, lerps sugar (Insect honeydew)

Preserved wild blackberries in syrup, forest watercress, raw honey and syrup.

come join me and let's have tons of creative culinary fun!

Sunday September 10
Fullerton Arboretum
Bacon Pavilion Classroom
1 to 4 PM
Link in profile

#cheese #wildfoodlove #farmercheese #foraging #preserves #fermentation #desserts #artofplating #feedfeed @thefeedfeed #foodart #foodpics #chef #foodies

Around 220 edible wild seeds exist locally and probably 10 of them can be found in stores. It may look like a desert right now in Los Angeles, but we are surrounded by an infinite amount of seeds, most of them are forgotten knowledge.

People don't know how to find and prepare them anymore.
It took me 15 minutes to collect a cup of Mediterranean mustard seeds yesterday morning and another 10 minutes to collect the same amount of black mustard seeds. Prepared properly, it's gourmet food and yet, people have no idea...the plants are viewed as weeds that needs to be destroyed, sprayed with chemicals while one could simply control the invasive plants through their consumption at all levels...from seeds to grown plants.
I make my own mustard and various pickled seeds condiments. I use seeds in my cooking too and in my wild crackers and flat breads.

You can really help the environment by mostly targeting non-native seeds if you want, they're actually the most plentiful. Good example as fennel seeds, all the mustard seeds, some lamb's quarter seeds, wild amaranth, plantain and so many more. It's all about collecting them properly so you're not spraying them around while collecting them.

On my side, I collect my native seeds such as black sage, white sage from my own native garden, use them as flavor accents in my cuisine and save some for re-planting.

Seeds are also beautiful for plating (making a dish aesthetic)

Seeds are superfood, the life force of a whole plant in a tiny shell. It's well worth your time learning about them.

I have some interesting seeds recipes (and mustard recipe) in my book "The New Wildcrafted Cuisine" available on amazon.

#seeds #chefs #wildfoodlove #edibleseeds

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