FORAGE: Black Raspberries

Money Saving Maine-iac

Money Saving Maine-iac

forage
verb
definition:  search widely for food or provisions.

My son and I arrived early to his soccer practice the week before last.  While he warmed up I decided to stroll around the perimeter of the field.  That’s when I spied them.  Oh my goodness, black raspberries!

Was there enough growing here for baking or just enough for snacking?  After assessing the situation I discovered there were blackberry canes everywhere!  They weren’t quite ripe yet so I made a mental note to check back in a week.

The following week I picked a day that was sunny and breezy, donned long pants and a long sleeve shirt, and headed back with much anticipation.

I have discovered that picking black raspberries is not for the faint of heart.  I hadn’t even picked a single berry when I scared a big ol’ garter snake out of it’s basking spot.  There many interesting insects, spiders, little snails and even tiny tree frogs on the plants.  I also felt at times that I was being pulled under by the thorns on the canes that just wouldn’t let me go.

Money Saving Maine-iac

Money Saving Maine-iac

I have picked twice in the same spot.  Each time taking a different son with me.  It was fun being outdoors talking and laughing with them while we picked.  It was a great time to connect with each other and to make a deposit into their ‘fun childhood’ memory bank.

Money Saving Maine-iac

Money Saving Maine-iac

We’ve picked 4 quarts, enough to make 2 batches (10 jars) of black raspberry jam.  In a few days more will be ripe and I’ll be headed back to hopefully put a couple of quarts in the freezer for future breakfast smoothies.

Foraging is a wonderful way to supplement your grocery budget and a fun activity as well.  Go on.  Get outdoors and get foraging.

FORAGE: White Perch

Money Saving Maine-iac

Money Saving Maine-iac

forage
verb
definition:  search widely for food or provisions.

Davey Baby and Sawyer were slaying the White Perch this morning!  They know White Perch is my favorite fresh water fish to eat.  It’s nice white meat that doesn’t smell or taste ‘fishy’.  Sawyer phones me from the boat landing all excited.  “Mom, you are going to be so surprised when we come home!”  He may be only 11 years old, but he’s already taking pride in putting fresh, nutritious food on the table for the family (or at least for mom!)

Sometimes they may only catch one or two.  When that happens I will freeze the fillets until they catch more.  I continue this process until we have enough for a fish fry.  This morning’s catch was unusually good.  They caught 12 fish and had a whole lot of fun doing it!

If you are knew to filleting Perch, this video is a great resource:  http://youtu.be/b5nQ1Af6oEw

Money Saving Maine-iac

Money Saving Maine-iac

We’ve found that a dozen White Perch equals 1 lb. of fresh fish fillets.

Money Saving Maine-iac

Money Saving Maine-iac

I think Davey Baby has mastered the art of the ‘Fish Fry’.  Yum!

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