+
Home Cooking

Ginkgo berries: culinary uses?

BananaBirkLarsen | Sep 5, 201109:36 PM     4

There is a tall, slender tree growing outside my apartment building. We never paid much attention to it until last fall when we saw a woman gathering its fallen berries through our living room window. After she left, we went outside to see what all the fuss was about. I picked up a berry and gave it a sniff. It smelled, quite literally, like crap. I was intrigued.

I recently identified this tree as a ginkgo tree. Aside from their alleged medicinal properties (apparently they show promise as a treatment for dementia), I still can't figure out why anyone would want these foul berries anywhere near themselves. A quick Google search turns up a number of blog posts along the lines of "Ginkgo Season, or Why I Hate Fall" and "Ginkgo trees sh*t berries". Wikipedia, on the other hand, has a segment titled "culinary uses" and claims the berries are sometimes eaten in China in congee, or at weddings.

My question: Is there any way I can take advantage of this tree right outside my window? I mean, sure, the things smell like feet, but so do some of my favourite cheeses. Is there any way to make them delicious? Or should I assume that the woman was simply attempting to stave off a bad case of dementia?

(The picture is courtesy of image search, but looks identical to my tree)

Want to stay up to date with this post? Sign Up Now ›

Recommended from Chowhound

What Makes a Wine 'Dry?'
Explainers

What Makes a Wine 'Dry?'

by Pamela Vachon | If you are any self-proclaimed lover of wine, it is likely that you have used the term “dry” to describe...

What Is the Difference Between Jam and Jelly?
What's the Difference

What Is the Difference Between Jam and Jelly?

by Amanda Balagur | For as long as we’ve been eating fruit, people have been keen to find a way to preserve it in order...

11 Sheet Pan Dinner Ideas for Easy Meals with Effortless Clean-Up
Food and Kitchen Hacks

11 Sheet Pan Dinner Ideas for Easy Meals with Effortless Clean-Up

by Vanessa Simmons | Some people read recipes and think, “that sounds delicious! I’ll make it tonight after work and the...

9 Reasons Why Bisquick Is the Most Versatile Ingredient in Your Kitchen
Recipe Round-Ups

9 Reasons Why Bisquick Is the Most Versatile Ingredient in Your Kitchen

by Mijon Zulu | I need to confess something and please don’t judge. I mean, if anything, Chowhound is the place where...

Get fresh food news delivered to your inbox

Sign up for our newsletter to receive the latest tips, tricks, recipes and more, sent twice a week.

See what's new!

View latest discussions ›