Picking nettles in June

Picking nettles in June

This year I’ve been a few times to the Cossall Park Estate to help Growing Southwark with their project to encourage the community to get growing and foraging for food. This first photo was taken in June when we foraged in the Kirkdale Nature garden and mapped it for food.

Mezza Luna to chop nettle finely

Mezza Luna to chop nettle finely

And we kept the nettle theme for our nettle burgers for the Feast on October 3rd.

Mixing the nettles in with vegeburger mix

Mixing the nettles in with vegeburger mix

 We mixed the nettles in with a vege burger mix. It’s possible to make burgers just from wild leafs too … mallow (heaps of protein), yarrow, lime tree leaf, nettles, dandelion leaf. Just avoid dog walking areas and by the side of a road. Parks are the best places because they haven’t had Victorian lead pipes leaking into their soil from previous buildings there.

Nettle burgers ready for the barbecue

Nettle burgers ready for the barbecue

 We patted and shaped and firmed and squidged. Ready for the barbecue!

Jerk sauce competition
Jerk sauce competition

We thought Jerk sauce might go well with the Vege burgers so we had a little competition. Kids from the Estate made the large pot on the right a week before the Feast and it was voted the best. This sauce is called CHK (Cossall Healthy Kids) Steve, local resident and drummer/singer in the band made the one on the left so well done Steve for making it into a competition! 

 

Dehusking sweetcorn

Dehusking sweetcorn

One of the the Growing Southwark volunteers, Rochelle, mentioned how Corn silk, the silky cotton type thread that you pull out from inside the husk is good for tea and is good for the kidneys. We made a flask of this tea and it was very nice. Very sweetcorn-like. The taste was strong and as I like all thing sweetcorn, especially ice cream and juice, this was one for me. Good tip!
Feasting tables

Feasting tables

 There were tables to eat at and gather today.

Walworth road bees and honey

Walworth road bees and honey

And these bees are from a Walworth Road apiary. Cool! 

Organic apples for the taking or the pressing

Organic apples for the taking or the pressing

Apple press

Apple press

 Fresh juice was available all day. You had to press it first though.

Ready to eat!

Ready to eat!

 Jacket potatoes, vegeburgers, barbecued sweetcorn, pies, salads. All the food was vegetarian and most was vegan. No one complained.

Sarah and the salads

Sarah and the salads

 Sarah from Growing Southwark demonstrating apron fashion.

Preparing the crumble topping

Preparing the crumble topping

 Karen was fantastic preparing the crumble, completely on the spur of the moment.

Plums harvested in Autumn

Plums harvested in Autumn

 I’d visited Cossall in August and was delighted to find all these delicious purple plums in the nature garden. I collected, stewed and froze them for the feast.

Crumble and cream - it was delicious!

Crumble and cream - it was delicious!

 It looked and tasted great!

Josh singing It's a Wonderful World

Josh singing It's a Wonderful World

 Josh had been on the walk in June and turned up to sing It’s a wonderful world. Very Louis Armstrong style!

Washing up in front of the band

Washing up in front of the band

And we washed up in front of the band. No more being banished to the kitchen!