Join Adrian for a wild food forage and a chance to cook your foraged ingredients at Vale House Kitchen. For more information and to book, go to www.valehousekitchen.co.uk
Adrian cooked up Mendip Wallfish (aka snails!) for the Food Awards at Yeo Valley HQ. It was the same recipe used for the TV show filmed last year in Wells with the late, great Sir Terry Wogan.
We can't promise you'll see these gorgeous English Summer Truffles, found in September, but we will try to find a range of interesting edible fungi and teach you how to identify them and check they are what you think they are!
During our foray you will learn where and how to look for fungi, the various habitats and tree species that are associated with different fungi. You will also learn how to avoid any dangerous fungi.
During the morning we will normally be able to cook up our edible finds and all have a taster to whet your appetite for fabulous fungi!
Please note that open events are unsuitable for young children, but older children are welcome if they have a keen interest, £20 pp for children aged 12-16. Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Dogs are not permitted on open events.
GIFT VOUCHERS FOR 2016 FORAYS.
Call or email us for a unique and original Christmas gift voucher, £35 pp, to book on any half day foray in 2016 run by Go Wild Activities.
Information for open events: Pre-booking essential. Children over the age of 12 may attend, accompanied by an adult, assuming they have a keen interest. Sorry, no dogs.
Private forays can be arranged, please enquire.
For participants comfort and safety, unfortunately young children and dogs are not permitted to attend open events. If you have older children or teens with a keen interest in the countryside and wildlife please contact us as limited places for older children may be available.
* Please note that we do not collect fungi or wild food for you to take home during our activities. We do not provide any commercial foraging services or supplies. Foraging for reward, sale or commercial purpose is illegal under the 1968 Theft Act.
Why not book a private event with Adrian or the team? Here are some ideas from past groups:
Coming Of Age / Teenage birthday
A 'coming of age' for a 16 year old, with 11 of his friends, and family members. The event involved a late afternoon start with a walk to a woodland camp area, setting up camp, fire-lighting and safe fire management, food preparation and dinner, story telling around the fire, bush craft skills, sleeping out under the stars, breakfast cooked over the camp fire, and back to reality, older and wiser! This event worked really well, both male and female friends were invited, as well as relatives including an older brother, cousin and uncle present. We had 2 instructors present at all times. It was a fantastic experience, which this young man chose himself to repeat again for his 17th birthday last year! £75 pp, minimum group size of 8. All food is provided, and we aim to use quality local and seasonal produce.
Family Fun Birthday Celebration
A family birthday celebration for dad aged 50, and his daughter, aged 30. A fun half day consisting of a wild food & natural history walk on Burrington Ham, a fire-lighting challenge and bush-bow archery competition. £35 pp. Pub lunch arranged to follow.
Parents & Children
Family gatherings for adults with their children, all ages, short sessions with foraging, bannock making for the kids, and a chance to get back to nature with your children! From £50 per 1 adult and 1 child.
Terry & Mason's Great Food Trip, BBC 2
Adrian was featured on this popular TV programme, cooking 'Mendip Wallfish' (aka snails in cider!) for Terry Wogan in Vicar's Close in Wells.
Tree Pollarding Course at Shapwick for Avalon Marshes Project
This day was spent learning about the history, ecology, and practical uses of willow and pollarding. We discussed the importance of these trees in the unique and historical landscape of the Somerset Levels.
Hedgerow Heritage Course near Glastonbury
Another successful training day for Avalon Marshes volunteers on the history, mystery, myth and magic of hedgerows in our landscape. Including archaeology, ecology and cultural significance of our much loved English hedgerows.
Avalon Marshes Wild food foray
We had another fantastic morning organised by the Avalon Marshes Project on behalf of Natural England, Somerset Wildlife Trust and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund on the Shapwick Heath National Nature Reserve. We followed the route of the ancient Sweet Track, looking for autumn/winter wild foods in a wetland environment. We found many things including Greater Reed Mace, Sorrel, and my favourite plant of the moment Bog Myrtle, also known as Sweet Gale which was historically used in the making of beer. We found a few edible mushroom species including Wood Blewitt, Puffball and Purple Brittlegill.
Autumn Fungi Foray 2014
We set off on a clear morning, and a great time was had by all. We found some great edible examples including Amethyst Deceiver, Common Yellow Brittlegill, Stump Puffball, Wood Blewitt and Ceps. Congratulations to Oliver, one of the participants who spotted the best Cep of the Year! Adrian then got out the camping stove and fried up the best examples for everyone to have a taste! There's nothing quite like the smell of mushrooms gently frying in the woods...
For future info: Our forays provide an educational experience so that individuals may gain a deeper understanding of the countryside, our environment and landscape history. During the activity, you will learn about the various habitats in which wild food can be found, and how to identify a selection of wild foods / fungi. We will pick & also taste small quantities of common wild food / fungi (subject to availability).
Wild Food & Foraging Talk & Walk for Avalon Marshes Project
A morning talk and afternoon walk designed to give volunteers skills, knowledge and experience in identifying wild food. The purpose of the training is that volunteers are able to provide an enriched experience to members of the public visiting the Avalon Marshes Project. The volunteers were enthusiastic and motivated, and soon got used to spotting edible wild foods!
Hedgerow Heritage Talk & Walk for Avalon Marshes Project
A training day for Avalon Marshes volunteers on the history, mystery, myth and magic of hedgerows in our landscape. Including history, archaeology, ecology and cultural significance of our much loved English hedgerows.
Wells Food Festival 2014
Thanks to everyone who came along to the talk & wild food forage at the Wells Food Festival, particularly the very enthusiastic youngsters.
Private Fungi Forays
We have had fun with lots of families & groups arranging private forays. In particular, a great time was had celebrating Ruth's birthday with family, friends and fungi! The rain didn't dampen anyone's spirits and we had an amazing haul with just enough time to try a delicious bolete cooked on a tiny camp stove, which inspired everyone to take the rest home to try later!
Autumn Fungi Foray 2013
We had a superb day on the Mendips finding many edible species in a variety of habitats.
The first woodland we visited was dominated by pine trees where we found many examples of Common Yellow Brittlegill (Russula ochrluca) mildly peppery, Stump Puffball (Lycoperdon pyriforme) and Common Puffball (Lycoperdon perlatum) which have a lovely soft white interior and quite a strong smell. Then the discovery of a stunningly vast ring of Wood Blewitts (Lepista nuda) with their bright purple/lilac colour, created much excitement within the group.
Moving on to deciduous woods, mainly consisting of beech we found Hedgehog Mushroom (Hydnum repandum). Strikingly different looking with an irregularly shaped cap the texture of chamois leather with neither gills or pores but ‘spines’, a clue is in the name. Heading up to some spruce woodland we found two large Ceps (Boletus edulis) hiding under a low slung spruce bough. What a find! Massive brown caps, like a hot cross bun (without the cross), thick swollen stems with fine white tubes or pores. These two would feed an army and that’s pretty much what we did. I removed a small gas stove, pan, oil, seasoning and cooking utensils from my bag and proceeded to cook up our finds. The aroma of fried mushrooms on this cool Autumn day was truly otherworldly.
So who’s up for the title of Woodland King? Well, it’s down to the two best finds of the day, both woodland species and both delicious. It’s a flavour match between the Cep, our reigning champion, and the Wood Blewitt contender. Unanimously the group preferred the Wood Blewitts, regardless of my culinary skills, so we can officially crown them ‘Woodland King’. Hurray! So as dusk settled we ended the day at the pub (of course!) with a pint and an ID session of our finds.