Sunday, January 06, 2013

a rolling stone gathers no moss

i've had this little fluffy bit of  moss on the windowsill for awhile now. i found it on a walk in the forest some time ago and brought it home. i liked the color of it.

yesterday, i was watching the river cottage, i learned that it's called oak moss and that you can eat it. i also learned it's not actually moss, it's a lichen.

it's also a key ingredient in lots of different kinds of perfumes. and i can see why - i sniffed my dry little sprig of it and it smells all manly and woodsy.  oh, and how awesome is this stone? husband found it for me on our christmas day walk on møn's klint - those white "eyes" are actually another kind of stone within the stone. we'll definitely be doing something with that natural face when i find the right piece of driftwood.

after learning oak moss was edible, i set out into the yard to see if there was more. it's such a gorgeous color - not quite as aqua green in it looks in this shot, but lovely nonetheless.

they call it oak moss for a reason, as i found it almost exclusively on oak trees, tho' i also found some on a birch that is standing right next to an oak tree. it seems to mostly grow on the older trees - the big, oldest one in our yard is covered in it, tho' much is too high up to reach. luckily, it's been a bit windy and a few sticks of it had blown down.

mostly, tho', i left it where it was. the smell is quite striking, so i imagine that using it in cooking requires very little. on river cottage, they fried it quickly in hot oil and used it as a garnish.

heston blumenthal has some fancy dish where he puts a dish of it in the middle of the table and creates an oak moss fog. i'm not going to get quite that fancy about it, but i am going try the river cottage way.

these sticks had blown down on their own (it's a very old oak tree in the back yard). i've got them in an old cupboard, drying a bit.

i'll definitely report back as to how it turns out. and in the meantime, don't you love that color?


Lisa at lil fish studios said...

I can't wait to hear how it tastes. I tried dyeing with it long ago but didn't have a lot of success. I've been thinking about trying it again, now that I have a few more years of experiments under my belt, but may have to try it as a garnish first.

Love the shifty-eyed rock.

celkalee said...

First of all, how cool is that rock? To have symmetrical inclusions is probably rare.

Around here we call the moss "green reindeer moss." While we have no reindeer, we have lots of white tail deer and they eat it. Of course, they eat just about every plant including all my landscaping!

celkalee said...

Oh, beautiful pnhoto's by the way. I love your perspective.

Carole said...

I would have never thought they were edible....thanks. Gorgeously shot.

paris parfait said...

Beautiful - the moss and your photographs!