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The Food Lover's Garden: Amazing Edibles You Will Love to Grow and Eat Hardcover – January 26, 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
After writing the widely acclaimed Veg Patch: River Cottage Handbook No.4 last year, Diacono has turned his attention away from the standard grow your own fayre to his major love, the growing of the more unusual fruit and vegetables. His philosophy is simple: why waste so much time and effort on growing the usual (usually cheap to buy) suspects only to find they don't taste that much different to what's available at the shops? Instead we should turn our attention to the tastes and foods we savour the most and use these as our guides to drive out the list of things we really want to grow. If the list still contains potatoes or carrots then that's fine, but do make sure they're varieties that can't easily be found in the shops.
If flavours and what you like to eat are your guide, then Mark argues you'll also find that more of the unusual foods available for cultivation will then be added to your must-grow list. He's the ideal candidate to show us the possibilities this offers as this is exactly what he has been doing over the past few years at Otter Farm, his smallholding in Devon which is billed as Britain's first climate change farm. He's saved us hours of work by revealing nearly 40 of his best tried and tested more unusual crops.Read more ›
As a landscape designer looking to increase my value to potential clients, learning more about unusual edibles was an intensely appealing idea. But part of the problem I've had in the past when trying new things, is that my clients don't always know what to do with the unusual fruits and vegetables I help them grow, even though they're enthused about trying something new. And I don't always know the quirks of growing them, because, duh, they're unusual!
Enter The Food Lover's Garden. Diacono's skilled with both gardening and cooking, and shows extraordinary ways of using both usual and unusual plants in the kitchen. Many of my clients already grow Fuchsia magellenica, so having a recipe for fuchsia fruit leather was awesome. I can see myself lending my copy of the book to interested parties!
I also already grow Chilean Guava, a useful landscape shrub here in the Pacific Northwest, so being able to show my clients that this isn't JUST an ornamental, but can also be used in muffins, or to make a slightly exotic jam, is really fun. The juniper-like tang to the mildly sweet berries makes them fun enough to be worth the trouble to pick.
There are recipes using mizuna, medlars, daylilies, alpine strawberries, quince, sweet chestnut, blue honeysuckle, goji berries, Carolina allspice, and many, many more. The best thing about the recipes is that detailed tips are given in each, sharing what about the flavor or texture of the plant or fruit is shown off to best advantage in the recipe. This really helps when you're trying to create your own recipes later.
Another thing I love is that this recipe and gardening book is just plain fun to read.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have read 100s of gardening books and this is a favorite. Very inspirational and detailed. Includes great recipes for each edible.Published on January 12, 2014 by tamara & michael
In his intro, the author says "life is too short to grow unremarkable food." How true! If I'm going to toil away in the vegetable garden, I want to grow something amazing! Read morePublished on February 2, 2011 by emkaybi