Friday, October 3, 2008

More wild greens

Two different wild mustard species around our house are covered in little green flower heads at the moment. They make a nice, if slightly labour-intensive mini version of broccolini.

They need to be boiled for a only a couple of minutes - if that.

The nicest tasting ones we've found are from this mustard species. I think it's Raphanus raphanistrum (wild radish), but not completely sure.

This other one (to the left) has flower heads that are slightly more bitter. I don't think I'll bother to cook any more of those. I'm pretty sure that one's something from the brassica genus, but again, not totally sure.

The mustard family is confusing, and I'm finding it's hard to nail down exactly what species and subspecies each specimen is. (And internet searches are made difficult by the way their common names are different from place to place.)

What I do know is that we have four different wild mustards around our house altogether. One is definitely wild turnip (Brassica rapa ssp sylvestris), and one is shepherd's purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris). But those other two above ...? Help - I need a friendly botanist!

I have a ridiculous backlog of foraging stuff to put up on this blog - and my family is (quite justifiably) harrassing me to clear all my photos off the computer desktop - so I'm going to try and put it all up over the next week or so.

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