Three years ago today: Berry Picking Class with Langdon Cook / by Leslie Seaton

Langdon Cook red huckleberry class on Bainbridge Island. Better Knowing a Berry circa 2011. I had met red huckleberries before this class, but this is when we really got acquainted.

This look back is giving me berry nostalgia. My berrymania burned bright and hot in the past three years but this year I have picked nary a berry. I am torn between wanting to make time for berry picking in coming weeks and NOT wanting to make time to process picked berries. I do enjoy foraging so much, but this year, feeling a bit torn about hobbies that create their own chores (a downside to wild food collection).

Recent developments at the Seaton household (a resurgence of berry-oriented smoothie-drinking) might be now creating some additional motivation for finding time for berries, but I think whatever plans I do make, I might have missed out on the stars of this slideshow: I generally have experienced that late July red hucks are especially wormy (at least from my favorite spot).

One can usually flush MOST of the worms from the fruit (keep them submerged in water until the worms all - shudder - crawl out looking for air, skim the top, discard, shudder more, repeat). But you can't flush the KNOWLEDGE of worms in your berries from your mind as easily so I'm sometimes...reluctant to risk late July red hucks.

But there's always blackberries. And mountain huckleberries. And although I keep ticking them nervously off on my fingers, there are still several (some! not enough!) summer weekends left. So there might be some berrymania, or at least berryenthusiasm to be had.

Click here for the full gallery and to learn more about red hucks and some other local (edible and not edible) berries.