Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Independence Days Challenge update

Am keeping up with the challenge so far. On days 1 and 2, I preserved things - dehydrating apples from our tree and making chutney with figs from my mother-in-law's tree.

On day 3, I cooked something new - making a caffeine-free coffee substitute from dandelion roots. I had done it before as a teenager, but the result was disgusting. This time I followed Euell Gibbons' instructions - cooking them on a very low temperature (around 100 celsius), for almost 4 hours. It wasn't too bad this time!

(First I tried doing it in the popcorn maker like we roast coffee, but the dandelion roots were so light they kept flying out onto the bench and floor.)

Then on day 4 (today), I recorded another show on foraging for National Radio's This Way Up with Simon Morton. I'm thinking maybe that counts as 'work on community food security'?

As before, I got tongue tied and said silly things, but at least I now have faith that they will edit it so that I magically sound more coherent than I really am! I think it goes to air in a couple of weeks and it will be the first in a monthly series.


Ruth said...

Oooh! Please can you post when your recording is going to be on National?
Fig chutney! Yummmo. Fresh figs...you are lucky! We have tiny tiny little figs on a 2 foot or so high tree. Grow little tree, grow!

Cally said...

Soooo - just how bad is "not too bad" =she asks suspiciously=!!

Figs - yum - I sooo miss my tree that we had in town. My one here is like Ruth's - maybe 3 feet high. It will have to get a lot bigger before we get any figs, as I planted it in the chook run as shade and food for them as well as food for me.

I nearly always listen to This Way Up so hope I don't miss the one you are on.

As for independence day - on Friday I harvested chestnuts, and on Friday night I failed to make pumpkin and chestnut soup, instead I cut my finger, went to A&E 40 mins away, got 3 stitches and have done stuff all since! Not feeling very independent at all!

Anna said...

Yes, please please let us know when that's going to air!

I haven't messed with dandelion roots since the ill-fated dandelion and burdock experiment of 2003 - took me hours and tasted revolting.

I think you may have inspired me with the Independence Day challenge. It's a great idea. Thank you for pointing it out

Johanna Knox said...

Ruth & Cally - all the best with your fig trees!

Cally - I'm sorry to hear about your stitches. How frustrating.

Re the dandelion coffee - it was very mild and seriously, really quite pleasant. Main drawback is how many roots you have to dig to get just one pot of coffee. They shrink a lot in the roasting process!

Anna, if you get the chance I'd be interested to hear about the dandelion and burdock experiment!!!