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All Areas > Food & Drink > Wild Food Foraging

Author: Steven Hawley, Posted: Friday, 24th February 2017, 08:00

Laver Laver

As the warmer weather creeps lethargically toward us, we can once again begin to turn our attention inland for our foraging needs. But before we start scratching about in hedgerows for our goodies, let’s take one last look along the coast for some Laver to really warm us up and get us in the mood for spring and summer. Laver is a seaweed found on the west coast, which usually covers rocks and looks like molten black plastic. Or snot – big black snot.

Easy to make but very time consuming

A traditional Welsh dish makes good use of Laver and you may or may not already be familiar with Laverbread. It’s easy to make but very time consuming. It’s full of iron, iodine and protein, so it would be a shame not to give it a go at least once just because of the preparation time!

Rinse a fair sized handful with clean water a couple of times to remove sand and other nasties. It might take a couple of attempts to get it really clean. Put into a pan of water and boil for about ten hours.

Once cooked, put into a mixing bowl and add oatmeal until the mixture goes from a runny green sludge to a not so runny green sludge. Fry up some bacon in a frying pan and then use the bacon fat to fry big dollops of Laverbread.

A trip to Wales may be in order

The main issue I noticed is that at no stage did the Laverbread ever resemble anything close to regular bread. As I watched my cheese sandwich ooze off the kitchen counter and onto my foot, I concluded that I had misunderstood its intended use. So I bought some regular bread from a shop and spread my Laver on it like butter and topped it with fried bacon.

I think a trip to Wales is in order to see how it’s supposed to be done.

If you’re not 100% sure that what you’re picking is safe for human consumption, don’t pick it. If you’re prone to food allergies, or pregnant, always seek medical advice before consuming anything foraged in the wild.

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