Last summer it seemed I was always bringing crazy mushrooms in for show-and-tell or force-feeding chokecherry jam to my fellow editors (the name “chokecherry” didn’t earn it many followers, I have to say; I’ve taken to calling it “wild cherry” jam instead). They’ve had a winter break from it all, while everything was covered in snow and ice, but oh, baby — it’s foraging time again!
Once the Juneberries (Amelanchier) start blooming in the Hilltowns, you know it’s time to look for fiddlehead ferns (Matteuccia struthiopteris). This year we had a few hot days in a row (right when I was out of town for the weekend!), so they went by very quickly, and I only managed to find a couple of handfuls that weren’t unfurled. As luck would have it, I was out on a walk when I happened upon a patch of them, and I’d left my trug in the car. I started picking anyway, and quickly realized that I’d need a place to stash my cache. Good thing I was wearing my trusty purple hoodie!
Fortunately, there were just enough to improvise an experimental pot of Curried Fiddlehead Paneer with Pine Nut Jasmine Rice. Yum!
Carleen Madigan, Acquiring Editor
Before becoming an editor at Storey, Carleen Madigan was managing editor of Horticulture magazine and lived on an organic farm outside Boston, Massachusetts, where learned the homesteading skills contained in her book, The Backyard Homestead. She enjoys gardening, hiking, foraging, baking, spinning wool, and knitting. Carleen lives in western Massachusetts.