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Hedgerow Cookbook

31 30 Many fruits, nuts and mushrooms see the Autumn section of this book can first be found during August. The first pickings of wild fruit can be made into that classic old favourite Rinse a pudding basin with cold water and line it with bread, leaving no gaps. Cook 2 lbs of mixed wild fruit for a few minutes in 23 tablespoons of water and 3 tablespoons of sugar. Strain off a cupful of the juice, pour the rest into the lined basin. Cover with bread. Put a plate and a weight on the top and leave overnight. In the morning invert the pudding over a plate and pour over the remaining fruit juice. Serve with cream. Bring 1 pint of apple juice to the boil and add a pint of raspberries or any wild fruit. Add 2 tablespoons of agar agar. Simmer for 5 mins. Pour into a dish. Add more fruit when cool. Cook any chopped seasonal fruit in a little water. Simmer for 5 minutes with the lid on. Thicken with a little diluted arrowroot and add sugar or honey. Pour over yogurt or icecream. Alternately place castor sugar and fresh flowers or herbs in a dry lidded jar. Do not fill. Shake daily for 2 weeks, then sieve out the flowers and dry the sugar in the oven set at a low temperature. store in a dark airtight container. Use to flavour cakes, biscuits, desserts, etc. Try roses, violets, lavender or thyme. Pick the young green nuts in July. Prick with a fork and leave them covered in strong brine for a week, until they are black. Drain, wash and dry them for two days. Pack into jars, covering with hot pickling vinegar. Seal and eat after a month.
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