Coastal foraging at Cushendall

It was a good and enriching afternoon on 24 July in Cushendall with Dermot Hughes of Forage Ireland and Dave Wall, our Living Seas Officer. Maeve, the Living Seas trainee and I were also there to learn more about the characteristics of the plants growing on our shores and find out what’s good to eat... and what isn’t!

We had a two hour walk on the shore of Cushendall, surrounded by mountains and amazing landscapes. The walk has been very rewarding, punctuated by explanations from Dermot about the different plants we were seeing on the shore, from the most poisonous to the tastiest; as for example the sea radish which can look rough and spiny but tastes actually like rocket, perfect in a salad.

Dermot also showed us the meadowsweet that we can put in hot water to make some delicious lightly scented tea or… beer! As we explored the rock pools, we also collected a hanful of periwinkles hiding beneath the seaweed.

At the end of the walk, Dermot cooked us delicious seafood while giving us some pieces of advice. We tasted and enjoyed the cooked sea thong which looks like spaghettis and periwinkles, with a little bit of butter and garlic, they taste very good! And then everyone headed off home equipped with a little more knowledge about foraging on the coast of Northern Ireland and ready to cook while discovering new flavours!

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