As a kid, I lived just up the street from the Nature Study Woods, a large County-owned park with its main entrance on Webster Avenue in New Rochelle. Lots of fond memories of exploring the trails, venturing along streams on a small inflatable boat, scrambling up rocks, and even inspecting the ruins of old retaining walls from the Boston-Westchester railroad.
Back then, I had a vague sense that some of the wild vegetation in the woods was edible, but aside from the onion grass, I didn’t know enough to sort out the tasty from the poisonous. Fast forward to 2014. Foraging for wild foods has become something of a trend, embraced by top restaurants and backyard naturalists alike.
So I am looking forward to bringing the boys for a forager’s tour of the Nature Study Woods on Sunday April 27th with “Wildman” Steve Brill, a foraging expert.
Things kick off at 11am with a presentation and tasting at the New Rochelle Public Library, followed by a lunch break at Recologie on Lawton Street. The tour of the woods begins at 1pm at Webster and Flandreau.
Steve says we can expect to find: “corn-flavored chickweed, garlic-flavored garlic mustard, savory daylily shoots, spicy poor man’s pepper, intense-tasting wild lettuce, flavorful common blue violets, prickly stinging nettles, and the roots of burdock [as well as] woody species such as sassafras, common spicebush, and black birch.”
Please note that you must reserve a spot on the tour at least 24 hours in advance. Call 914-835-2153 to make a reservation.
There’s more information at Steve Brill’s website. (Click on the Tour Calendar for the Recologie and Nature Study Woods details.)
Cue Lou Reed’s background singers . . .