July – Third Week
Rowan and I were camping on Mull this week, at Fionnphort in the far south west of the island, right by the beach. We stopped at a wood on the way over to Oban for a picnic, and had a walk. “Bet I can find something to eat” I said, and lo, there were hordes of delicious blaeberries (bilberries) just asking to be picked. A German couple were already tucking in so we wasted no time in collecting a bag each to serve as snacks for our camping trip. We finished them the first night though – Rowan turned purple. “You can never have too much fruit Mum,” she frowned as I suggested she might want to slow down. Later in the week she repeated it as she foraged a hedge in Salen for wild raspberries. Also in the little wood I found some Orange Peel Fungus on the path – a flavourless but attractive ascomycete we saved for breakfast.
Being by the beach, seaweed had to be on the menu. Enteromorpha is bright green, roughly cylindrical and looks like a pile of translucent, irridescent guts where it grows in profusion in rock pools and shallow sea. But don’t be put off – we had it stir-fried in butter with a single field mushroom we found in the hills and it was delicious.
I threw in some Serrated Wrack (Fucus ?) as well, but the meths ran out in the trangia and I think it could have done with longer cooking.
On Iona, we found some wonderful flowers on the machair, but the only wild food was Crowberry, with black berries, and I couldn’t remember if they were edible so we didn’t. Apparently, they are – this month I seem to be getting to grips with all these odd “something-berry” plants.