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San Diego: Foraging


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San Diego: Foraging

Angie V. | Dec 6, 2001 10:48 AM

This is not a restaurant question; nevertheless it is a culinary challenge to which I think Chowhounds might respond. I have been reading an amazing book, Coming Home to Eat, by Gary Paul Nabhan. The author, who lives in Arizona, spent a year eating only foods grown within a 250 mile radius of his home. Many of the foods he eats, such as prickly pears, yucca blossoms, and mesquite tortillas, are foods that were traditionally eaten by the natives who lived there, but have since fallen out of favor (due to cultural domination, food distribution, the global economy, etc.). Still, I consider Nabhan a first-rate Chowhound. He searches out cowboys to help him roast mescal, he eats quail roadkill, plucks juicy saguaro fruit from towering cacti, and visits the Egg Lady for her duck, turkey and geese eggs.

This got me to wondering if people on this list have their own local sources for foods off the grid. Not restaurants, per se, but people growing and producing their own specialties. The guy who sells his wife’s still-warm tamales in the 7-11 parking lot or a neighbor who gives away bags of loquats from her backyard tree.

Share your tales of foraging and culinary adventures. Where do you buy great tortillas (not the thick cardboard discs they sell at the grocery store)? What about chicken that tastes like meat and not antibiotics and corn? Eggs? Honey? Where can you buy fish right off the boat? Where is a great blackberry patch?

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