active 2007 Nov 17 · joined 2007 Sep 21 · 0 votes cast

Being a "foodie" began with my European origins and naturalist leanings. For me the greatest pleasure is always connected with nature- and what she yields up for my pleasure (both emotionally and for culinary purposes).

It was not frugality (but joy and compulsion) that first prompted me to experiment with wild harvested fruits. Thus, out of wild plums (Prunus), elderberries (Sambucus sp.), Viburnums, Aronia, Blueberry and Cranberry (Vaccinium sp., Crab Apples (Malus) and others I created sauces, jams and jellies (but mainly sauces) to plunk on or pour over plain (Balkan Style only) yogurt or to add to baked desserts.

More recently I have begun to obsess about wild mushrooms. This I once knew well as a child in Germany (where wild mushroom gathering is second nature) but the species here must be re-learned and mentally digested well, as the risk is too high. Next year I will begin collecting in earnest.

As an adjunt to the above, are herbs---and my discoveries of the best preservation methods (drying, freezing, using fresh).

I am obsessed with great, rich cheeses, a good cup of coffee, heavy European breads with body, dark chocolate, meals made with fresh, simple ingredients.

If you are curious about the other side of my life, see

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