I received a new book for Christmas. A real, honest-to-goodness dead-tree book. It wasn’t even a used copy. While I felt bad about the consumption, I can’t argue the personal economics when a used version of the book “in good condition” costs more than a new paperback edition on Amazon.com.
But I digress.
The book, which I have coveted for a while, is Euell Gibbon’s Stalking the Wild Asparagus. One of the classics of the foraging genre (yes, that’s a thing!), referenced by nearly every other tomb on wild edibles which has been published since.
Reading the seminal work of the field has been enlightening and engaging, although I frequently have more questions than answers. One example: he suggests using dried elderberries in baked goods, much like one would use dried wild blueberries. But no word of caution about the cyanogenic glycosides found in the uncooked seeds – what happens if one mindlessly nibbles the dried elderberries while mixing batter? Also, what’s with this notion that milkweed is bitter and needs multiple changes of water to be rendered palatable? And how come he doesn’t warn his readers about the, um, unfortunate gaseous emissions inflicted by eating sunchokes?
I digress again.
I found the book inspiring. Each of his chapters measures about the length of a several of my blog posts, so maybe I could write my own book some day!
And the recipes! Although not formatted like a modern cookbook (and lacking the gorgeous photographs showcased in Marie Viljoen’s masterpiece), they’ve given me many ideas for future posts, including the recipe which should have been here today: Sunchoke Chiffon Pie.
I couldn’t resist. Sunchokes in a dessert??? (You thought I was merely joking when I warned that sunchoke recipes were coming, ha!) Better yet, since the sunchokes are boiled and mashed, this is a great use for the little nobs and misshapen bits of sunchoke which are unsuitable for air frying as chips or chopping and roasting.
Unfortunately, I only started the pie this morning and as I write a whole day later, the photos are not taken, my interpretation of the recipe (and edifying tips) not typed up, and, well, the pie has not yet been eaten for me to know if it is even worth sharing!
So rest assured, there is a recipe (with aspiring photos and helpful pointers) coming, it just won’t be today. Drink the rest of your eggnog and savor Christmas dinner leftovers; dream of 2020 finally ending in a few days. And coming your way in 2021 – more sunchoke recipes than you can possible imagine!