Reviewing Wild Food: A Complete Guide for Foragers by Roger Phillips
Roger Phillips is a bit of a legend in foraging circles. He has been described as Britain's 'original forager' and he's probably responsible for eating vast swathes of the British countryside! His Wild Food book is a wonderful read, and a great reference for everyone looking to find enjoyment out of cooking what they forage.
Delving into the world of a Roger Phillips wild food book is always a delight. This is because here we have a man with many decades' worth of foraging behind him, and plenty of stories to tell along the way. The over-used phrase, 'he's forgotten more than you will know about X' is apt here when it comes to this man and wild food.
He's inspired foragers and chefs alike, bringing new ingredients into home kitchens and high-class restaurants up and down the country. He gave a whole generation the confidence to pick and eat wild food by themselves.
And so this book offers the same level of creativity with wild food that we've seen explode over the last few years. Wild food is now mainstream - did you know one of the best restaurants in the world served wild food?
So for anyone looking to try foraging, or increase your knowledge, there is surely something new in here. It offers a multitude of recipes for what you find in the UK - it is essentially a foraging recipe book. This is a great book to have on your kitchen shelf because there's only so much fried-on-toast recipes you want to eat! Here instead we are met with options like stir fry Enteromorpha and Jelly Ear rolls. There's even a section on eating puff balls. I love puff balls, so this is always great to have handy for when I come across them.
Layout of the book
The book is laid out into six handy sections so you can easily get straight to what you want:
Flowers for Salads
Seaweed and Salt Marsh plants
Vegetables, Leaves and Herbs
Fruit, Berries, Nuts and Roots
Teas, Beers and Wines
As mentioned, this isn't a field guide for identification. Rather it is a book to help you make the most out of your foraged finds so that they don't go to waste. And you don't even need to go far to start trying some of the recipes out, with even nettles and dandelions from your own garden being a delicious addition to your dinner!
Should you buy Wild Food by Roger Phillips?
If you're looking to up your foraging game and produce something that will make dinner guests go 'wow' when you cook up your foraged food, then this is definitely the book for you. It's also a fantastic example for beginners to show what you can do with wild food in the UK.
I'd recommend this book to those who wish to take their foraging game to the next level and start creating delicious, interesting and unique food from what they find around them. I have a feeling this will set a lot of mouths watering around the country! You can buy Wild Food: A Complete Guide For Foragers by Roger Phillips from Amazon here.