How to Find Wild Food in the Mountains of New Mexico (Video)


Image credit: The Perennial Plate

Yesterday I posted a rather divisive video on trapping and killing feral pigs in Texas. This next offering from The Perennial Plate—the same folks who brought us video of alternative dairy farming, and hunting and eating roadkill in Minnesota—is an altogether gentler affair. Walking the mountains of New Mexico with John Duncan, a modern-day nomad who teaches at The University of New Mexico about wild greens, and living from the mountains, Daniel and Mirra learn about eating from the wild, and collect some observations on man's relationship with nature along the way.

The Perennial Plate Episode 60: Mountain Home from Daniel Klein on Vimeo.

From the wild herbs of Japan to the trendiness of foraging, this isn't the first time we've looked at wild foods. Given the eroded nature of our natural habitats, and the busy, urbanized lifestyles we lead, foraging is unlikely to become a large-scale source of sustainable food for many of us. (In fact, if it did we could face serious ecological problems.)

Nevertheless John Duncan touches on one of the most important, positive aspects of foraging—it is a way to reconnect with nature on the most basic level and, perhaps, to start understanding that any separation of civilization and the wild is, at best, a fairly arbitrary boundary. It is just possible, he posits, that if we learned to view ourselves more as part of nature, not separate to it, we might just learn to value and protect it too. "But that", he shrugs, "is just philosophy."

Obligatory warning: As with any wild food, it is crucial to know EXACTLY what you are eating. As the video above explains, taste is no reliable indicator of edibility.

More from the Perennial Plate
a href="http://www.treehugger.com/files/2011/07/trapping-feral-pigs-video.php">Trapping and Killing Feral Pigs is Disturbing, But Is It Green?
Hunting and Eating Roadkill in Minnesota (Video)
A Gulf Fisherman Struggles for Economic Survival (Video)
Growing Oyster Mushrooms, and a Recipe for Vegetarian Terrine (Video)
When Cows Retire: An Alternative Approach to Dairy Farming (Video)

Tags: Biodiversity | Conservation | Local Food | United States