A Practical Guide to Foraging, with Easy Identification of 60 Edible Plants and 67 Recipes
By Sergei Boutenko
(North Atlantic Books, Paperback, 9781583946022, 296pp.)
Publication Date: July 16, 2013
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In this field guide to foraging wild edible plants, Sergei Boutenko (son of raw-food guru Victoria Boutenko) explores the health benefits of wild-harvested food, explains how to safely identify trailside weeds, herbs, fruits, and greens that grow worldwide, and shares his delicious, nutrient-dense recipes.
Sergei Boutenko has been gathering wild plants since he was 13, when, early on in a 6-month hike from Mexico to Canada, he and his raw-food family ran out of provisions and turned to foraging for survival in the wild. Back in civilization, Boutenko was dismayed by the inferior quality of store-bought food and industrial agriculture, and began to regularly collect wild plants near his home and on his travels. Now, in Wild Edibles, he shares knowledge gleaned from years of live-food wildcrafting and thriving in harmony with nature.
This practical guide to plant foraging gives hikers, backpackers, raw foodists, gardeners, chefs, foodies, DIYers, survivalists, and off-the-grid enthusiasts the tools to identify, harvest, and prepare wild edible plants. The book outlines basic rules for safe wild-food foraging and discusses poisonous plants, plant identification protocol, gathering etiquette, and conservation.
Boutenko explores in detail the many rewards of eating wild flora: environmental protection, sustainability, saving money, economic self-sufficiency, and healthy living. He draws on thoroughly researched nutrition science to make a compelling case for the health benefits of a diverse, local-food diet that includes wild greens.
The majority of the 60 edible plants described in this field guide can be found worldwide, including common-growing trees. Over 300 color photos make plant identification easy and safe. A chapter containing 67 high-nutrient vegan recipes—including green smoothies, salads and salad dressings, spreads and crackers, main courses, juices, and sweets—provides inspiration to join Sergei on the trail to radiant health.
“Wild Edibles: A Practical Guide to Foraging, with Easy Identification of 60 Edible Plants and 67 Recipes has taught me that my backyard is full of free food! Way to go, Sergei.” —John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market
At age 15, SERGEI BOUTENKO collaborated with his family on their first book, Raw Family: A True Story of Awakening; he and his sister Valya went on to coauthor Eating without Heating: Favorite Recipes from Teens Who Love Raw Food and Fresh: The Ultimate Live-Food Cookbook. Boutenko holds a degree in communications from Southern Oregon University. A writer and educational filmmaker, he conducts seminars on healthy living worldwide. The author lives in Ashland, OR.
“Wild Edibles: A Practical Guide to Foraging, with Easy Identification of 60 Edible Plants and 67 Recipes has taught me that my backyard is full of free food! Way to go, Sergei.”
—John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market
“Sergei grew up eating wild foods. He's extraordinarily qualified to teach us all about the magic and innate vigor of wild edibles. Increase your life force energy and have the best day ever every single day with the knowledge Sergei shares within the pages of this book!”
—David Wolfe, author of Eating for Beauty, Superfoods, and Chaga: King of the Medicinal Mushrooms
“Wild Edibles is a useful guide to foraging and includes information on identifying 60 edible plants. Many colorful photographs and line drawings are provided as well. The author also presents clear details on which wild plants are poisonous and not edible. Vegan recipes using these foods are included. For example, you can whip up a Wild Amaranth Smoothie or prepare Wild Daily Salad, Sow Thistle Pesto, Sheep Sorrel Soup, Marinated Fiddleheads, or Roasted Veggies with Burdock.”
“All of the books written by the Boutenko family provide valuable insight into diet and natural health, which inspires us and helps us move through our crazy lifestyle as professional musicians. Sergei’s new book is no exception. Thanks to Wild Edibles: A Practical Guide to Foraging, with Easy Identification of 60 Edible Plants and 67 Recipes, we can now eat even healthier on tour! By conscious eating we take care of our bodies and the entire world.”
—Rodrigo y Gabriela
“This book is clear, concise, and thoughtfully written for both novice foragers and those who know a thing or two. … Included along with identification are uses, nutritional information (very detailed), helpful tips, identification tricks, cautionary advise about look-alikes, and flavor. [Boutenko] also includes conservation and gathering etiquette. … His enthusiasm for foraging and eating healthfully while respecting the earth comes through on every page.”
—Fiddlehead Foraging blog