Foraging Diaries (NTU Herb Garden)

Michelle is our resident forager. If you get the chance to take a stroll with her, you might notice that she has the ability to stop suddenly to pluck off some weed-looking plant from the roadside and put it in her mouth. She will be sharing her foraging diaries with us in hope that we can start seeing the forest as a free grocery store. Here goes…


We got word about a day before about some chefs wanting to forage – Mads Reflunds, fresh off the 4×4 event, with other chefs – Dave from Burnt Ends, Bryan from Morsels, Denise who gathered us all, us farmer folks, and Rebecca, interviewing Mads for the Straits Times.

We brought the guys to NTU (Nanyang Technological University), one of my favourite spots for the curious plants, including the fragrant Tonkin Jasmine, with its mandarin colored, edible flowers blossoms.

I am observing the responses. Uncle Ng leads the tour, serving his usual rounds of herbal tea (which I politely turn down). Mads gingerly picks up, and sniffs the Asiatic Pennywort, Centella Asiatica, breaking into a grin – finally – someone who gets excited by ingredients! (often times I get blank stares when I share with friends about this).

We move through a few other plants familiar to us – Wild Mints, Shinybush, Wormwood, Blue Butterfly Pea and Yellow Pea flowers, Wild Maracuja (tiny in size), etc. I am once again exhausted from the mosquitos that leave me bitten and bleeding. Continue reading

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