In the fifth of the River Cottage Handbook series, John Wright reveals the rich pickings to be had on the seashore - and the team at River Cottage explain how to cook them to perfection. For the forager, the seashore holds surprising culinary potential. In this authoritative, witty book John Wright takes us on a trip to the seaside. But before introducing us to the various species to be harvested, he touches on such practicalities as conservation and the ethics of foraging; safety from tides, rocks and food poisoning; the law and access to the shore, our right to fish, landing sizes and seasons; and equipment such as nets, pots and hooks. Next comes the nitty-gritty: all the main British seashore species that one might be tempted to eat. The conservation status, taste and texture, availability, seasonality, habitat, collecting technique and biology of each species is covered; there are also quite a few gratuitous but fascinating diversions. The species covered include crustacea (brown shrimp, common crab, lobster, prawn, shore crab, spider crab, squat lobster, velvet swimming crab); molluscs (clams, cockle, dog whelk, limpet, mussel, oyster, razor clam, winkle); mushrooms; plants (alexanders, babbington's orache, fennel, frosted orache, marsh samphire, perennial wall rocket, rock samphire, sea beet, sea buckthorn, sea holly, sea kale, sea purslane, sea rocket, spear-leaved orache, wild cabbage, wild thyme); and seaweed (carragheen, dulse, gut weed, laver, pepper dulse, sea lettuce, sugar kelp, kelp). Finally, there are thirty brilliant recipes. Introduced by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Edible Seashore is destined to join the other handbooks in the series as an indispensable household reference.
It is difficult to think of a more quintessential symbol of the British countryside than the British Hedgerow, bursting with blackberries, hazelnuts and sloes, and home to oak and ash, field mice and butterflies. But as much as we might dream about foraging for mushrooms or collecting wayside nettles for soup, most of us are unaware of quite how profoundly hedgerows have shaped the history of our landscape and our fellow species. One of Britain's best known naturalists, John Wright introduces us to the natural and cultural history of hedges (as well as ditches, dykes and dry stone walls) - from the arrival of the first settlers in the British Isles to the modern day, when we have finally begun to recognise the importance of these unique ecosystems. His intimate knowledge of the countryside and its inhabitants brings this guide to life, whether discussing the skills and craft of hedge maintenance or the rich variety of animals, plants, algae and fungi who call them home. Informative, practical, entertaining and richly illustrated in colour throughout, A Natural History of the Hedgerow is a book to stuff into your pocket for country walks in every season, or to savour in winter before a roaring fire.
Just because the undead’s taste buds are atrophying doesn’t mean yours have to! You duck into the safest-looking abandoned house you can find and hold your breath as you listen for the approaching zombie horde you’ve been running from all day. You hear a gurgling sound. Is it the undead? No—it’s your stomach. When the zombie apocalypse tears down life and society as we know it, it will mean no more take out, no more brightly lit, immaculately organized aisles of food just waiting to be plucked effortlessly off the shelves. No more trips down to the local farmers’ market. No more microwaved meals in front of the TV or intimate dinner parties. No, when the undead rise, eating will be hard, and doing it successfully will become an art. The Art of Eating through the Zombie Apocalypse is a cookbook and culinary field guide for the busy zpoc survivor. With more than 80 recipes (from Overnight of the Living Dead French Toast and It’s Not Easy Growing Greens Salad to Down & Out Sauerkraut, Honey & Blackberry Mead, and Twinkie Trifle), scads of gastronomic survival tips, and dozens of diagrams and illustrations that help you scavenge, forage, and improvise your way to an artful post-apocalypse meal. The Art of Eating is the ideal handbook for efficient food sourcing and inventive meal preparation in the event of an undead uprising. Whether you decide to hole up in your own home or bug out into the wilderness, whether you prefer to scavenge the dregs of society or try your hand at apocalyptic agriculture, and regardless of your level of skill or preparation, The Art of Eating will help you navigate the wasteland and make the most of what you eat.
In this comprehensive and practical guide to the countryside, passionate and hugely knowledgeable countryman Alan Titchmarsh explores the heritage of rural Britain, its landscapes and wildlife, its traditions, customs and crafts. He'll look at the beauty of chalk downland, offer a checklist of British butterflies and where to find them and show how to make moth traps and wildlife ponds. He'll identify the best breeds of cattle for meat and milk, explain how best to look after a pig and the secrets of a successful small holding. From keeping chickens to dressing a stick, from dry-stone walling to creating a wild flower meadow, the essence of country life and the best places to encounter it will be identified in this celebration of the British countryside and its delights, skills and treasures. Lavishly illustrated, beautifully produced and information packed, The Complete Countryman will be an inspirational showcase for all that is best about rural Britain and will reconnect us with its wonderful wise ways.
From sea squirts to slugs to Swallowtails, Bugs Britannica is the third beautifully illustrated book in Richard Mabey's landmark series, a companion volume to the bestselling classics Flora Britannica and Birds Britannica. Like those much-loved books, Bugs Britannica is not a biological guide but a richly illustrated cultural one, where British bugs are seen through the eyes of writers, musicians, artists, photographers and naturalists - from the great Tudor naturalist, Thomas Muffet (father of Little Miss Muffet) to Irvine Welsh's talking tapeworm in Filth - with vivid contributions and observations by members of the public, fascinated by creepy-crawlies of all kinds. Taking British invertebrates as its subject, the book is structured along a roughly evolving path, from simple cell life-forms - amoeba, worms, crustaceans (proof, say the authors, of `just how far you can go on very little') - to bugs we all might recognise - spiders, butterflies, bees - and back into the water to meet the molluscs and `almost-fish'... It works so triumphantly because author Peter Marren has examined bugs in the dusty corners of our houses and gardens as well as traversing mountains, lakes, fields and the seashore. He observes not only the fascinating habits of the bug world, but also the eccentric behaviour of the human bug obsessives. But, of course, the true heroes of the book are the bugs themselves: the nimble dicks, lady clocks, coffin-cutters and multitudes of others. From the Boring Sponge (its official name) to the Mermaid's Glove and Penis worm, via the Dark Crimson Underwing and Ruby-tailed wasp - this rich compendium of bugs is a must, not only for naturalists but for anyone who cares about the crawling, buzzing swarms which make up the estimated 40,000 species of bugs that live on or around Britain.
In the twelfth River Cottage Handbook, John Wright explains how to home-brew and make your own tipples. What could possibly beat a cool pint of beer down the pub or a lazy glass of wine at your favourite bar? The answer is: home-brewed beer or your very own brand of wine. With this, the twelfth in the River Cottage Handbook series, the inimitable John Wright shows exactly how easy it is to get started. You don't need masses of space to make alcohol at home, and if you follow the simple instructions, you won't be faced with exploding bottles in the cellar. But don't forget, it's all about experimentation and finding out what works for you. Booze is divided up by alcohol type, from beer, cider and wine to herbal spirits and fruit liqueurs. Each section starts with an introduction to the basic techniques, methods and other useful information, before giving recipes for delicious tipples like rhubarb wine, sparkling elderflower wine, mead, cherry plum wine, orange beer, lager, real ginger beer, sweet cider, zubrovka vodka, amber spirits, rose infusions, blackberry whiskey, pomegranate rum, chestnut liqueur, mulled cider and there's even a hangover cure thrown in for good measure. With an introduction from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and full-colour photographs as well as illustrations, Booze is a home-brewer's book with a kick.
In the seventh of the River Cottage Handbook series, John Wright explores the culinary delights of the British hedgerow. Hedgerows, moors, meadows and woods - these hold a veritable feast for the forager. In this hugely informative and witty handbook, John Wright reveals how to spot the free and delicious pickings to be found in the British countryside, and how to prepare and cook them. First John touches on the basics for the hedgerow forager, with an introduction to conservation, safety, the law, and all the equipment that you may need. Next he guides you through the tasty edible species to be found. Each one is accompanied by photographs for identification, along with their conservation status, habitat, distribution, season, taste, texture and cooking methods - not forgetting, of course, some fascinating asides and diversions about their taxonomy and history. Fifty species are covered, including bilberries, blackberries, raspberries, common mallow, dandelions, hedge garlic, horseradish, pignuts, nettles, sloes, sweet chestnuts, water mint, bulrushes and wild cherries. After this there is a section describing the poisonous species to steer clear of, with identifying photographs as well as warnings about nasty 'lookalikes'. Finally, there are thirty delicious recipes to show how you can make the most of your (edible) findings. Introduced by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Hedgerow is an indispensable household reference, and an essential book to have by your side for every trip into the countryside.