Collecting the folklore and uses of plants

The London Salad

Posted on by royvickery |

The London Salad is a booklet produced by Ceri Buck, of Invisible Food – – providing details of four projects which took place in south London during the summer of 2010. Participants included inner-city schoolchildren and new Londoners, mainly from Ethiopia and Eritrea. Although Invisible Food seeks to encourage people to use local wild plants as food, the projects also involved Brixton Market stall-holders, many of whom sell vegetables and fruits which are ‘exotic’ to most Londoners. Sometimes after examining exotic vegetables it was possible to forage for wild alternatives.
In addition to increasing people’s awareness of their local flora, the projects also helped to build communities, imparted a sense of well-being, and, perhaps, most importantly, encouraged people to explore and enjoy green spaces. Thus the projects reached communities and areas which other, more traditional, approaches all too often fail to reach.

Image: common mallow (Malva sylvestris) which can be used as a substitute for the African leaf vegetable, known as melokhia, ewedu or saluot (Corchorus); J.G. Sturm, Deutschlands Flora in Abbildungen, 1796.

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