OK so you are out in the wild and you are out of food…. Or are you?
Look around people there is free food everywhere! The hard part is figuring out what you can eat and what will kill you.
First, to find the right food you have to know where to look. If you are in a tropical or warm humid climate, the food will be basking in the sun normally in a clearing or on the edge of a forest. In a dry climate, most of the food will be near whatever water source you can find. So what if you cannot find water? No problem you should be able to find cactus and you will be amazed that many are edible.
If you have internet access, or better yet if you think about it before you go, you can look up local plants that are indigenous to the area you are planning on going to. Print out what you can and get pictures so you can compare. Be careful because some plants look different in different regions and at different life stages.
Did you know that ALL grass is edible? Its true and anything less than 6” is easy to find, chew and digest. The flavor ranges from sweet to bitter and if you have ever been to a juice shop that sells wheatgrass you know how sweet it can be. Grass is also very healthy!
Weeds are abundant everywhere and many are not only edible but they actually taste great! Here are just a few that you can eat.
- The leaves of Dandelions make a great salad especially if you packed a light vinaigrette. The flowers of the Dandelion can be made into wine if you have the time.
- Green rippled Plantain leaves can be cooked like you would any other tough green.
- Sorrel tastes somewhat lemony and is found all over North America and Europe. The younger leaves have a citrus flavor and the older leaves go good in soups.
- Most Cresses (Garden cress, water cress, rock cress, pepper cress) are great in salads and soups.
- Catnip is not just for cats. Cats find the aroma irresistible and humans find the plant very relaxing.
- Chickweed is a succulent and is filled with vitamins, minerals, omega-6 fatty acids and more. Do not eat too much as it can cause diarrhea.
- Burdock tastes like asparagus when stripped of the rind and boiled before the flower opens.
- Echinacea is not only a medicinal herb it is also a wild edible food. The leaves and flower petals are edible raw or cooked.
- Garlic Grass has small shoots and looks like spring onions or cultivated garlic. Chop it like scallions and use in salad or pesto.
- Red Clover can be eaten raw or you can steep it in hot water for a delicious tea. You can also use the leaves and the flower blossoms in a salad.
- Alfalfa is not only good but it is good for you. You can eat the leaves or the young shoots raw or cooked.