Wild Persimmon Bread with Hickory Nuts

Persimmon Bread with Hickory Nuts

Ingredients

2 cups flour
! tsp baking soda
1 cup sugar
¾ cup butter (1 ½ sticks)
2 well beaten eggs
½ pint wild persimmon pulp (1 cup)
½ cup chopped “clean” hickory nut meat (I like mockernut hickory)

Preparation

Sift flour and soda.
In separate bowl, cream sugar and butter.
Add eggs and soda-flour mixture.
Add persimmon pulp and hickory nuts.

Mix to a thick batter and pour (more like globbing wet glue) into two small loaf pans ( lined with parchment or waxed paper)

Bake about 1 hour at 325o F. Bread will be a moist, dark brown.

Original recipe from Euell Gibbons: Stalking he Wild Asparagus

 

Escargot, Morels & Ramps Soup

Several soupyears ago, Ellen and I had escargot and morel soup at a restaurant in Indianapolis – can’t remember the name of the establishment. Since then, I’ve been searching for a recipe. I seemed to remember it being the consistency of oyster stew, but all I found were cream soup recipes. Maybe that’s what we had.

So, this weekend I took the base for a cream soup and added my own touches, substituting morel rehydration water for some of the chicken stock, and ramp bulbs with their lower stem for garlic & scallions, and then added ramp powder. It turned out excellent, but it’s vey rich and filling, and makes a meal in itself. I served four 8 oz. SoupRampsservings - two for supper and two for lunch the next day. Realistically, with a meal, figure six 5-ounce servings

Note: I save my dried morel stems and grind them into flakes for later use. You make ramp powder by drying leaves in a dehydrator and then grind them in a small coffee grinder I usually use someone else’s grinder, like the coffee room grinder at work :-)
I’ll make it again in the spring with fresh ramps, morel water ( from rehydrated morels) that I will freeze this winter, and then use fresh morels for the recipe.

Ingredients
2 cups chicken stock
15 dried morels, stems removed, rehydrated with 2 1/4 cups warm water for 30 min
1/4 cup white wine
1 cup whole milk
handful of ramps, chopped ( I used 8 small ones, frozen this spring, with tops removed)
ramp powder
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 6-oz can escargot, drained and halved (2 cans if you like)
1/4 cup onion, chopped
6 tsp butter, divided 4 & 2
sea salt and white pepper

Directions
Chop morels into pieces same size as escargot.
Combine morel water, chicken stock, onions and morels in a pot and simmer for 20 minutes.

In another saucepan, melt four tablespoons butter over medium heat gradually stirring in the flour until smooth.  Remove from heat and gradually stir in the milk and cream.  Return to medium heat and cook stirring constantly, until thickened.  Season with salt and pepper.  Stir mushroom- stock into sauce.

In a small pan, heat the remaining two tablespoons butter and add escargot, ramps, parsley; sauté for 2 minutes.  Add to soup along with wine.
Adjust the “garlicness” by with garlic salt. Then add salt, pepper, and ramp powder to taste.

 

Grilling Oysters !!

Oysters061114A 2-week dry spell has stunted the chanterelle growth around here. However, a 2-inch rain on Wednesday (2 days ago) yielded a nice treat. There is an “oyster log” that I have been by at least three times this year and was always a day late and a dollar short. Today was different. I’ve got about 20 lbs for the Farmers Market tomorrow.

The nice thing about this find is that there was a nice variety of sizes from tiny to saucer-sized that are great for grilling, and they were all beautiful and fresh – very few beetles, if any. Lather them in olive oil, sprinkle on garlic salt and one’s favorite spice mix. Mine is Cajun seasoning. Gonna be nice tonight!!

I also got a fresh Chicken of the Woods this week. I broke off the tips for eating, and that yielded three pounds. Hopefully some of the chanterelle patches that haven’t produced yet will respond to this rain  next week.