بِسْــــــــــــــــــــــمِ اﷲِارَّحْمَنِ ارَّحِيم
السلام عليكم و رحمة الله و بركاته
The advantage of living in Algeria, in North Africa - in the Mediterranean is that almost all year year round it's picnic season. As early as Februrary, the lush green lush green hills, rugged granite mountains and sleepy traditional villages, all surrounded by the brooding waters of the Mediterranean sea invite you to get out the house into nature.
My utmost favourite things to outside of cooking is travelling, picnicking and foraging. I never miss a chance to get outside, breathe in the fresh air and explore. I'm just not the type to sit at home sipping tea or watching soap operas.
I love at any given moment grabbing my kids, the diaper bag, my camera, a sack filled with various fresh vegetables, a loaf of freshly baked bread, and my little pocket knife and heading out to the countryside. No planning needed. No appointments or reservations. Just a spur-of-the-moment outings with my lovelies!
We often go picnicking, but foraging all depends on the season and weather. Autumn September to November it's chestnuts, acorns, mushrooms and sorrel. Summer prickly pears, blackberries, pine seeds, elderberries, wild mint, dandelions and wild figs. But it's Spring now ... we can find wild rosemary, dill, lavendar, dandelions, olives, wild violets, burdock and wild garlic.
My ancestors were professional foragers. So were yours. Some 10,000 years ago before the devleopment of farming humans survived on they hunt and foraged. Foraging for wild food isn't a new concept as you can see ... but with modern food technologies foraging isn't about survival anymore. For most part it's about nostaligia. For others it's sustainable traditional herbalism - taking what God has put on this Earth for us and about making the best of it. Thankfully this age-old practice is making a comeback as more and more people are returning to the traditional ways.
Here's some random pictures from our day out in the Algerian countryside ... at Maqta Kheïra, a virtually virgin untouched hills at the feet of the Atlas Mountains. We were foraging, picnicking; playing and just being out in nature. Enjoy!
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