New food groups?

Always looking to try new things, so here’s an interesting ideas things to eat:

Eating hostas

Great articles here!

Of Plums and Pignuts

One of my favourite seasonal treats from the forest garden is the hostas. No, no spelling mistake: hostas are really edible. In fact, they are a near perfect forest garden crop. Woodland is the natural habitat of many hosta species, so they like moist soil with plenty of organic matter and tolerate a considerable amount of shade. A friend tells me that they have a positive allelopathic relationship (i.e. they secrete chemicals that help each other) with apples, and since the research on it is published in Russian I’ll have to take her word for it. Hostas are no novelty nibble: they have the potential to be a major productive vegetable.

hosta clump

The best part of the hosta is the ‘hoston’, the rolled up leaf as it emerges in the spring, although many varieties are still pretty good even once they have unfurled. The best way of cooking them depends on the…

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The Cuban Swet Potato (Boniato))

Today was a particularly stressful Monday–thanks to disappearing content on my computer-assisted course. But one has to eat, stress or no stress.  My quick lunch today was the Cuban sweet potato (Boniato) that I brought home from the grocery store yesterday.

True to my usual idea about checking out something new, I did some skulking on the web, and decided that the best way to get acquainted with this new vegetable would be to prepare it as simply as possible.  Being rushed and needing uninterrupted computer time to recover from technological boo-boo, I just treated it like a baked potato–washed, oiled, couple light stabs with the tip of a paring knife (so it wouldn’t explode), popped into a 350°F oven for about 40 minutes. (That’s when it was soft enough to smush, well, like a baked potato.)

A little sprinkle of fleur de sel, was all it really needed, but I confess to checking it out with a little unsalted butter, too.  It was not as wet as the usual orange sweet potato though more moist than a russet baking potato.  The flesh was pale yellow, and not as sweet as the orange-fleshed  sweet potatoes, nor was it as dry,  as pale, or quite as sweet as the now-available white sweet potatoes.

I enjoyed it for lunch!  More Cuban sweet potatoes will find their way into my kitchen before too long if they are available.  I really should check things like nutritional information and glycemic index on it too.

Now off to the kitchen to pop some veggies and potato into the Römertopf, and then back to the computer to finish the recovery project!

(Hey, I’m also patting myself on the back that this new veggie came into the house yesterday and I ate it today–did not allow it to loiter in the crisper.)