Smitten with Samphire

If you know what samphire is well ohh get you, and if you don’t, then join the club. Turns out people either know about samphire and love it or have never heard of it let alone eaten it.

Until a few years ago I had never tried it. The we found it pickled at a Christmas market and would buy our yearly stock to keep us going, but last year the market stopped so I thought that was it, no more samphire for me.

That was until I actually read about it and read it is a #foodforfree and a great one to forage for in marshes in July and August.

(Having said that I am still yet to try doing this but I am sure I will.)

But last week at my favourite market in Nuneaton the fishmonger was selling it. So I bought loaaaaads of it.

At only 98p per kg its pretty cheap too, certainly when some people compare it to asparagus which isn’t!

 

So what is this Samphire I speak of…!?

Its a sea vegetable basically, a succulent found in marshes, estuaries and tidal creeks. It has tall, green stalks that when bitten into has a crunch and a rather salty taste if eaten raw, which it can be, perfect in salads. It can also be chopped and put into sauces, steamed and eaten as a cooked vegetable or how I know of it, pickled.

 

Here is how I did mine.

Take about 500g of fresh samphire and blanch it under boiling water.

Then dunk it in cold water, drain and leave to one side for now.

 

Put about 800g of pickling vinegar in a pan and turn on a low- medium heat. Add about 100g of brown sugar, 1 clove, 2 peppercorns, 1.5 tea spoons of mustard seeds, 0.5 tea spoons of turmeric and 3-4 bay leaves.

Stir as you bring it to the boil them simmer for a few minutes and then leave to cool completely.

 

Prepare the jars by running them through the hot water tap (or what ever method you use) to remove all of the bacteria and when ready put the samphire in the jars and top with the pickling liquid. I added the mustard seeds to the jars but discarded the other spices.

 

Simple!

 

Since doing my research I realise there are many great ways in fact to eat Samphire and good old Hugh F-W has captured many here.

 

I will be sure to give them ago and suggest you do too so either get to your local fishmonger or your local marsh right now!

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