Saturday, October 15, 2016


The Farmer
has lived in Southern Ontario for 57 years.
He has seen Staghorn Sumac growing wild all over the place.
Yet he has never tried eating it for some reason.

 That is about to change.
Thanks to The Farmers New Neighbour.
The New Neighbour is of Pakistani decent.
His Wife is is of Persian heritage.

The Neighbours have been enlightening The Farmers with new flavours.
Some spicy hot and some spiced with flavourful new tastes The Farmers have never tried.

The Farmer knows that sumac is a spice used in eastern cooking.
He thought he would treat The Neighbours to the Canadian version of the spice.
The Neighbours loved it and are now going to harvest their own sumac trees.
With some instruction from The Farmer.

So into the tree he goes with the snips.
After breaking the fruit down into the dehydrator it goes.

Unlike the eastern version that is more berry like.
The Canadian version is a fuzzy little seed. 

After 4 to 5 hours shuffling the layers top to bottom helps even out the drying.

After drying for 12 hours shaking in a sieve removes some undesirables.

 Now its time to break them down to remove the stems.

 Its a btt of work to get the seeds all off but you dont want woody bits in the spice.

 They are so soft and fluffy.
All we want is the fluff though not the seed hidden within.

Into the coffee grinder they go a handful at a time.

 Just pulsing on and off so as not to break the internal seed.

Now into a sieve again and over a bowl stir the mixture around with a spoon.
Shake a bit tap the screen a bit as well to get the red powder through the screen.

 There will be a few fine bits of white from the seed 
but if you don't pulse to much it should be minimal.

 The seeds go into the garbage.
They may sprout in the compost and no one wants that.
Thousands of sumac trees popping up in the garden is not what compost is for.

 What a nice taste to liven up baked fries.

The Farmer couldn't resist making skordalia dip with this years fresh garlic to go with the fries.
Leave out the lemon juice. The sumac will give the citrus burst needed.

 That being completed.
What will The Farmer have to drink with his sumac fries?
How about some cold steeped sumac tea.
Just break apart the berries, dump them into a mason jar and add water.

12 hours later strain through cheesecloth and refrigerate.
The Farmer tried hot steeping but it became bitter.
Though the cold steeped juice can be heated without becoming bitter.
The Farmers Son a.k.a. The Brewmaster says the seed should not be heated.
Maybe the seed free spice could be wrapped in coffee filter paper and hot steeped.

Thats it.
Happy foraging

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