The Forager Chef’s Book of Flora explores some of the most exciting ingredients available today. But more importantly, it gives home cooks and chefs alike a whole new way of seeing and thinking about all vegetable ingredients, by looking at them through a trained forager’s eyes. Over the past fifteen years, Minnesota chef Alan Bergo has become one of Amercia’s most exciting and resourceful chefs. Watching wild plants grow and searching for new edible parts of familiar plants transformed his culinary style, similar to how the nose-to-tail movement affected the way chefs consider animals. Now when Bergo sees squash in the garden, instead of waiting for them to ripen, he harvests some while they are still green, and the shoots, flowers, and young greens too.
In The Forager Chef’s Book of Flora, Bergo shows how understanding the properties of leaves, stems, roots, and flowers can inform how you prepare something exotic-like the head of an immature sunflower-as well as more common vegetables like broccoli stems or eggplant. As a society, we’ve forgotten this type of old-school knowledge, including many brilliant culinary techniques that were borne of thrift and necessity. For our own sake, and that of our planet, it’s time we remembered.
Featuring over 200 recipes, from Seared Hosta Shoots to Raw Turnips with Acorn Oil, Friulian Sauteed Wild Greens to Crisp Fiddlehead Pickles, The Forager Chef’s Book of Flora will unlock new flavors from familiar favorites, and make familiar favorites out of the abundant landscape around you.