Jonathan Taylor writes:
Heirloom food culture is converging with the New Thrift, even if many practices, like shopping farmer's markets and the home canning featured in the Times Wednesday, are most readily practiced by those with a surplus of time, if not money. The Wall Street Journal Wednesday charted a number of nutritious greens that were once commonly eaten but now proliferate, unnoticed and underfoot, in the guise of weeds. They're had at greenmarkets for greenbacks, but are ripe for wider rediscovery as an opportunity for frugal foraging.
As the Journal notes, plants like purslane and sorrel went by the wayside by the mid 20th century, as "immigrants and rural Americans moved to cities, leaving behind both their gardens and their ethnic origins." In 1943, during World War II days of rationing, The New Yorker's Sheila Hibben offered a timely reminder of "those perfectly edible greens which in happier times we called weeds." Hibben's "Markets and Menus" department was normally given over to the offerings of carriage-trade suppliers of glazed hams, cookies and wine.
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Emdashes, founded in 2004, is written and drawn by Emily Gordon, Martin Schneider, Pollux, Jonathan Taylor, and Benjamin Chambers, as well as occasional guest contributors. All posts before October 2008 are by Emily Gordon.