Tag Archives: FORAGING

SMALL STEPS

Blogging isn’t easy for me, so I’m trying a new approach – very quick posts.
Yesterday we went for a bike ride along the old East/West Berlin border. Really recommendable! The part we went to is between a river and an autobahn and it’s really green. There is quite a few people there, but it’s still kind of mystical. I’ve never been there before. We even went outside Berlin, crossing the border to Brandenburg, the next state. We saw horses, sheep, lots of birds and a crane.

rocket

On the way we’ve found some wild rocket. I have been finding it around Berlin quite a bit this year, never noticed it before or knew it grew wild. Just came across the smell one day and thought I’d try it. It tastes amazing! Quite peppery and so much better then from the store!

In one of the little towns outside the city we came across some bushes of different kinds of cherry plums next to the road. The bigger yellow kind, some red ones and some small unripe looking things, literally the size of cherries. I first was worried they’d be really sour. But they are delicious, bursting in your mouth, just a bit tangy, but also really sweet. So, we were grazing from these bushes for a while and then took some home too.

plums

Another good thing about them, they are really easy to pick, coz not on a tree. If I get a garden I need to plant a couple of those. I didn’t like the yellow and red kind too much. Too floury, not so juicy and refreshing.

We also went into a garden colony, which was very neatly kept, around the corner from us. And people had put out baskets with apples and little pots with plants to take. Very sweet!

Yesterday was great! We’ve been having really great weather the last couple of days, actually the whole summer has been pretty good so far. I’m soaking in the last rays, getting worried autumn will be here soon.

Anyways, we had an awesome day out, it was really cool seeing a very different side of Berlin, at times I thought myself in another town and to get some foraging in.

Have a great week!!!

FREE FLEA MARKET

Two weeks ago I went to a free flea market for the first time. A free flea market is  just like at a normal flea market, but everything is of curz-free. Some of the market stalls are run by free shops, but anyone can come and participate and put up their own stall. People can come and just take things or if they wanna give something away, they just put it on one of the tables.
It’s like a spontaneous free shop.

bbb

I took the pictures a bit late, almost no sun anymore.

The last market was held outside on a nice, sunny day at the backyard of “Kunst-Stoffe” in Pankow, which is in the north part of Berlin.

shirts

What projects am I gonna make with these?

Kunst-Stoffe is also an interesting place, it’s like a recycling yard in a building. People and businesses can drop off materials and resources they don’t need anymore.

linen stack

Got a nice stack of fabrics!

They have fabrics, haberdashery, wood, old electronics, foams, wood, tiles.. all sorts of stuff. You have to pay for the things, but you can probably get them at a decent price.

steckdose

A splitter box, also very useful!

The market was very small and lots of fun. I met some of my friends and we had a blast looking for things and hanging out.

books

Got one book on wild plants, the second one that I’ve got for free! And one on storage solutions.

One woman even gave me a free green smoothie.

kitchen knife

Ah yeah, a knife. You always need a knife.

There weren’t many stalls, but people brought really cool stuff, no rubbish. And some people even like “rubbish”, I would still use ripped clothing and sew something with it for example. And everyone was really lovely!!

Some eccentric coat hangers!

Some eccentric coat hangers!

Very awesome!! I will be there again next time!
Is there something like free markets where you are? If not, maybe you feel like organizing one?

EAT YOUR TREES

So I went on this ‘herb walk’/forage tour on Saturday and it was pretty awesome!! I loved it. The woman who was doing it, Elisabeth Westphal, did a really great job, she is really enthusiastic about nature, plants and the environment and you can really feel that.

The tour went for 3 hours and by the end I was pretty beat. It was  quite exhausting, how Elisabeth does it I don’t know, she’s full of energy, I think it’s coz she eats wild herbs every day. Must be good for you!

Anyways, it was really interesting to find out and learn new things. For example, we started the tour with edible leaves of trees. I didn’t know you could eat the young leaves and flowers of linden trees for example. And there are different kinds of linden trees. We tried the summer and the winter variety. The young leaves of the summer variety are really soft. And they get really slimey when you eat them. That’s supposed to be good for you.

winter linden tree

Also you can eat most pine trees. I knew that, but I didn’t quite believe it. Most of them taste disgusting. You only eat the young shoots and you can make tea from them. They taste really strong. By the way, is any tree that has needles called a pine tree in English and what are foliage trees called?

Some pine tree, I think it’s a larch.

Also, what I didn’t know is, you can eat, I think all, fruit tree leaves. Pretty cool. I tried some apple leaves and they have a really interesting, particular taste. Like a flowery, apple taste.

soft, furry apple leaves

This is a really popular plant in Germany, Bärlauch, which means ramson or wild garlic.

one of my favourite finds, I wanna make some pesto with it

Riding my bike through the forest, I found the smell rather offensive in the past, coz it’s really strong. You can buy this shit in pesto at the organic shop. Of curz I had to try it and it tastes quite nice. The store-bought pesto smells and tastes really grassy, but then developes a very piquant flavour. Almost spicy, nutty.

I liked the fresh flower, fruit thing better then the freshly picked leaves. They are really fresh and juicy and the little balls pop in your mouth. The flavour is very leeky, garlicy.

You can also eat a lot of flowers and use them as edible decoration, like for example, forget me nots.

Pretty!

But don’t eat the buttercups, they are poisenous!

Pretty beech tree. Edible too, in parts.

Yeah, so the forage tour was really successful and I could write lots more, but maybe another time. Elisabeth did a really great job and I’m looking forward to the next tour of hers. Hope you learned something and Happy Foraging!

OLD FRIENDS NEW WAYS

I have been back in Berlin for almost 5 weeks now. I LOVE it! It’s funny coming back, I really feel like Berlin is my (adopted) hometown. It just fits. I feel really comfortable here. But then, I’m not working already, once you work in a place it’s a whole nother story. At the moment it’s kind of like a holiday. An adventure.

I thought I would be blogging basically straight away, but it took me quite a while to settle. Not in a way to feel at home, as I said that was no problem, more in a way to get back into a routine.

Routines are funny, the exciting part of moving somewhere different and starting something new is that you don’t have a routine or that you change it, but I like routines in some way. It’s a funny one.

For example, before we left I was eating really healthy, mostly raw vegan food. When we got here I was like “OH MY FUCKING GOD!! Organic shops here are awesome!!! I wanna try EVERYTHING!!!” So we ate a lot of organic, vegan, but nevertheless much more processed food. And the vegan restaurants!!

I had a couple of slip ups, were I ate some vegetarian, non vegan sweets. I made this whole list in my head ages ago of all the things I wanted to eat coming back and it’s difficult to get things out of my head once they found a way in there, so yeah, I’m trying to be more undogmatic, but still straight edge, if that makes any sense?!

But now I’m basically back to my old ways.

Breakfast! I try to have something like this every day.

Also, no internet.

Some minimalists seem to go for the ‘no internet at home option’. In our shared flat we can only pick up the signal of a free internet every couple of days and then it’s really shit. So mostly we go to the library now, they give you codes for 2 hours of free internet. I’m sure you could use the internet there the whole day, but I kind of like the 2 hour limit, it keeps my internet addiction contained. It’s amazing how quickly 2 hours pass on the net. Frightening!!!

I met some of my old friends again. It’s funny how you can  basically pick up were you left with some people, even if you might not have seen them for 5 or more years. One of my friends, I’m pretty sure she’s a witch, she’s got a black cat, is a feminist and collects herbs, 3 reasons she basically would have been burned at the stake for a couple of 100 years ago, is gonna go on a herb forage with me next week and I’m super excited!

We gonna look for elderberries, linden flowers and some ramson maybe, which is like a wild garlic.

I’m also going to another forage walk tomorrow.

Here is a cool music clip, by Sticky Antlers. A band I found while watching a documentary about Punk in Africa.

Here is the crazy long trailer.

I nearly passed out watching this movie, the cinema was so overcrowded and the show was really delayed. As with the trailer, the movie would have benefited from some better editing, but nevertheless it was very interesting.

Also cinemas are so much better in Berlin!!! Oh my god! I’ve got so much catching up to do! I love art house, independent, foreign movies. I hate that regular cinemas nowadays just show this regurgitated boring hollywood crap that just insults my fucking intelligence with it’s cliches and stories that have been done 1000 times before.

I’m trying to get into blogging again more regularly, see how it goes!

Have you tried something new lately?

Eat Your Weeds

I’m looking forward to doing some foraging in Germany.

Here is a classic foraging plant, dandelions! I used to pick them to feed them to my guinea pigs, personally I find them too bitter. I will try them in a green smoothie though, once I get a blender. Hopefully the smoothies turn out nice, because I’ve got high hopes. I will mix them with a lot of fruits in the beginning, bananas and pears and put spinach in and dandelion or whatever, kale maybe and then ease into putting more greens in. But a 50/50 mix of fruits and greens can’t be too bad?! Haven’t checked out any green smoothie recipes yet, but that can’t be too hard. Just freestyle it!

looks like a great youtube channel, definitely gonna check out more of his videos

I really like drinking dandelion/chicory coffe substitute. It’s very common in Germany, it’s called Malt Coffee and kids drink it. Definitely better than that sugar filled Milo crap or whatever else kids drink..
Anyways, I love it, we have it with rice milk. I wanna make it myself sometime, collect dandelion roots and roast them. Sounds kinda exciting!

Here are some more weeds. Eat them! Just watch out that crazy people haven’t sprayed this shit!

And here is a cool link to an article called ‘the fantastic four – 4 essential wild edible plants that may just save your life

Ok, maybe quite a dramatic header, but it’s always good to know what’s available out there, not just for emergency situations. And free stuff?! Always great!!

So yeah, watch these videos and eat your damn weeds!!

Saturday Update

Today we just chilled. It was raining anyways. So we watched some German videos on alternative living.

Then we made a list of stuff we need to sell on Ebay for our move. Gotta list them soon! As we need to move out of our house several days before we leave. Getting rid off most of our possessions is also gonna prepare us for the minimalist lifestyle.

And I’m just about to sell all the clothes from my online shop. Hopefully that isn’t gonna be too stressful. Also a bit sad, I’d hate to waste stuff.

And one of my blogging friends posted this link about Berlin foraging and mushroom walks in my comments the other day. I thought that was really awesome of her! We were struggling quite a bit with the foraging here and I think that’s gonna be a great introduction to the German foraging scene. I’m really excited about it! Gonna be eating dandelions soon and making woodruff drinks and shit like that.

Back To Nature

Camping. Getting away from it all.  Like the time sucking-nes of the internet and facebook. Thank Fuck I don’t have a smart phone! I’m scared to get one!

Back to the basics, back to nature. Hearing the wind in the trees, seeing how dark it gets in the forest at night and how still. How wild it gets when the wind gusts blow suddenly through the forest.

Campfires! One of the best things about camping. When I smell the smell of wood fire it always reminds me of camping. It’s awesome. Something useful to teach your kids, how to make a fire. Responsibly of course.

Also great is to cook your dinner over a fire. How cool is that?! We had a frying pan with veggies over the fire, it took a while to heat up, but then it was sizzling away nicely.

Dinner

We got our veggies from the local farmer’s market.

Lunch

We just did a little bit of foraging, which basically just meant picking blackberries from the side of the track and of course, drinking the spring water, from the mineral springs.

They stain!

I like to take my regular bedding when I go camping. I mean this ain’t an arctic expedition nor are we climbing the Himalayas here, so no need for sleeping bags. Sleeping bags are not very romantic. Or very comfortable, otherwise you would probably always sleep in them.

This trip cured me from the idea of using compost toilets in the near future. I used one of them at the camp ground and came out nearly throwing up. THE SMELL!! Now some people say I’m sensitive to smell and I know I am, but that was something else! Now, I don’t know how viable wetland wastewater treatment is for the Australian climate, but I think that would be far more sophisticated.

I would think it would need less maintenance then composting toilets. And is less gross. And less crude. I’d say instead, use the toilet in town or dig yourself a hole!

Here is a picture of a campfire.

Campfires are the best!

Do you like camping and getting back to nature? What do you like best about it?