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Would You Eat One of These if You Could Get It?

Six days after I noticed that the leek scape in my post called “You Can’t Eat the Flower and Have It Too” showed its first little bulge, it started looking round and firm, like it was ready to pop out.   However,  its outer covering had turned brown and dead-looking.  So I got out my pointy little titanium scissors and gently cut away at the top

Inside was a bumpy protuberance that vaguely resembled a morel mushroom, only green. Not sure why, but I blew on it and to my surprise one of the bumps jumped out at me and opened into a tiny bell-shaped white flower. So I pulled the withered material back and one by one the little flowers began to shoot out and open up. In minutes the globe had quadrupled in size. The next day, after about 2/3 of the little blossoms had fully opened, 5 or 6 diminutive brown seeds could be observed dancing in rings around the tops of the open flowers.

Two questions answered!

  1. Can you get a leek cutting to bolt indoors in water?  Yes!
  2. What color would this one be if it opened, as they can range in color from white through various shades of pink to red? Definitely not red!

But the 3rd question, and I did not cheat and look up the answer because if it didn’t open up I didn’t want to face the disappointment, was:  Can you eat the flower once it has opened (or more properly, would you want to!?)  Yes, and YES!

I took a picture to show you guys first, and then cut off a few tiny blossoms to taste.  They were quite good. Google says “all” allium flowers are edible, and that these are very good sprinkled over pasta alfredo.  Mmm, with pecorino and black pepper. However, they should qualify that statement by noting tat all of the different kinds of allium used as vegetables are edible, because, apparently, all parts of the ornamental alliums are said to be somewhat toxic to humans, and highly toxic to cats and dogs. There also are some deadly plants that are not alliums, but might be mistaken for them in the wild.

Have you ever eaten an onion, garlic, or leek flower? Would you?

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Legend

Written by Ann Hartley

The whiskered cat is a lucet, a mediaeval tool still in use today to hand weave I-cord, which you see coming out of the hole in kitty's head in my profile photo.  I hand carved this lucet a) to see if I could, b) because I needed a lucet, and c) because I didn't see any cute cat lucets for sale online.  I weathered it a bit (is "distressed" the correct term?) because  that seems to be the trend these days, and because it is probably going to get banged up anyway.

I like to camp and as my late husband's motto was "If you have seen one tree, you have seen them all!" and he has been gone ten years now I have gone on a camping frenzy of late.  Love it!  One of my challenges is to find ways to take my interests camping with me.

Cats:  Why do I list cats as an interest but not have one?  Because I am nomadic and even when I am not camping, I have trips to take from my summer residence to the winter one, and then there is spring, and my favorite season fall.  Can't expect cats to put up with all of that moving around.  Not getting up at 5:30 to feed something just because it meows, either.  But I can draw and paint them, carve them in wood, and weave them in tapestry.   That and I am blessed to have friends with cats.  The cats, of course, know I belong to them and those other people are just their caretakers.  Right?

Camping:  I cannot take golf with me camping either, but all of my other interests I can.  I can take a lucet, a small tapestry loom, tools for drawing,  painting, and carving, and live plants if I'm not crossing state lines.  All that and I can still fit in a comfy pillow, fresh sheets, and a double sleeping bag.

This is the first year that I have taken beet kvass and kombucha with me on a camping trip and it worked fine.  My favorite picnic lunch is home-made sprouted grain bread, cheese, hard-boiled eggs, sauerkraut, kvass, and kombucha with nuts and chocolate for dessert.  Of course I take a sub-zero ice chest and when I come out of the forest my first stop is for a double-double cheeseburger with caramelized onions.  Yep.

Plants:  Unlike cats, plants are pretty easy going about the travel.  I just take cuttings, and where legal, of course, transport them with me.  Almost all the plants I like are fast-growing nutritious edibles that come from cuttings or regenerate from scraps, so I am constantly experimenting with and learning about these little green guys.

Fermentation:  Fermentation is not only and age-old and effective way of preserving food for safe consumption, but it adds nutritional value.  So I take diverse kinds of fermented food on trips and it grows along the way and keeps and if it doesn't get eaten right away there will be more of it for later.   I also like to take pictures of and write about different kinds of food that I have fermented, so I won't enumerate them all here.

Weaving and other arts:  There isn't a wholesome art form that I've met that I didn't like, but I have some training in drawing, painting, and fabric arts, and have just recently decided to learn something about woodcarving because I have recently taken an interest in weaving and needed some custom tools, which I've found to be fun and easy to make.  For years I avoided weaving in part because it looked very expensive, but then I discovered repurposed fabric yarn, particularly "tarn" which is twine made from old t-shirts and the like.

Golf:  I read 19th century writer Sarah Cleghorn's prize winning poem "The golf links lie so near the mill / That almost every day / The laboring children can look out / And see the men at play" back when I was a starving college student and resolved never to play golf and ended up living near a luxurious golf course for 30 years without ever playing.  But we grow and change.  When I was a kid the other kids loved to play marbles but I didn't have any, so a 6-year old friend loaned me hers and told me to go play for "keepsies" and win and give hers back and keep the rest.    What if I lose, I asked her.  I was terrified.  She said she was willing to take a chance.  I didn't believe in myself then, but she believed in me.   Pretty soon I had lots of marbles.  The friend who taught me to play golf was in his 90's when I met him and he told me before we even started that if I learned to play I would soon be making money.  He believed in me.  Hey, I don't make a lot, just enough to cover my entry fees, balls, tees,  and a new club every year or two.  But now I love to play golf and as there is a positive correlation between golfing and longevity, I plan to play it for a long time.   I had the best of teachers.

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