What’s it about?
Our 1 day foraging course is based on the Kent Downs in an area of outstanding natural beauty. The courses are for anyone who’d like to gain an insight into the edible delights of the British hedgerows, fields and woodlands. So if you’re curious about the plants, berries and fruits that grow around you and wonder which you can eat and which you need to avoid, come and join us!
Foraging has seen a surge in popularity over the last few years and doesn’t show any signs of slowing up. Which suits us as we absolutely love it! There’s nothing like strolling through the great British countryside and knowing the names of trees and plants that you walk past and which ones you can eat. On this foraging course you will learn all about the abundant, tasty plants that are there for the picking!.
What will I do on a Jack Raven Bushcraft 1 Day Foraging Course?
On our 1 day foraging course the focus is on edible plants, nuts, berries and fruits commonly found in the hedgerow, fields and woodlands. As a heads up, foraging is about as seasonal as it gets, so what we gather will depend on the time of year that you come along, so for instance if you come along in the spring we’ll be looking at all of the new plants that are coming through; come in the late summer and we’ll be turning our focus to include berries as well.
From the meeting point we’ll first have a quick chat around the legalities of foraging, the kinds of places where you should and shouldn’t forage and what containers you should use to collect your free food.
After that we’ll take an amble along the tranquil lanes of the stunning North Downs Way and look at common plants, hedgerow fruits, berries and nuts that can be eaten; we’ll collect some as we go. We’ll also point out any plants and berries that are poisonous, and how to tell them apart from edible lookalikes so you know what to avoid.
From the hedgerow we’ll move into ancient woodland and look at different plants, again collecting as we go.
When we arrive at our ancient woodland camp the kettle will be ready and you can have a hot drink. Once you’ve eaten your packed lunch we’ll have a refresher on the plants we’ve collected to make sure that you’ve got the main identification points down.
From there we’ll collect some firewood, settle in for the afternoon and start cooking using the wonderful plants that we’ve collected. Everyone gets their own dish to cook and contribute to the banquet. We’ll be cooking over open fires in the woods where the temperature is controlled by adding some more firewood!
On past foraging courses we’ve cooked a wide range of culinary treats including nettle soup, ramson & hogweed crostinis, nettle bruschetta, dandelion bhajis, dead nettle pakoras, hogweed and jelly ear spring rolls, ground elder fritatta, nettle sag aloo and many, many more!
With a bit of luck everyone will have their dish ready at the same time and we can sit at our woodland dining table and enjoy the results of our foraging day.
You can see our complete course schedule here.
Location: Westwell, Kent
Duration: 1 day
Course size: Maximum of 8
Catering: We’ll eat what we forage, but bring a packed lunch as well as it will be late afternoon before the foraged food is ready.
Note: There is a short walk from the meeting point to the camp.
You might also find these Frequently Asked Questions useful.
What our customers say
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Had a fantastic day foraging and learning so much from Gary, Nicola. The range of things we collected and then cooked was amazing. Very well organised and welcoming, I am looking at the hedgerow in a very new light. Will do this again in the autumn with my wife.
Our family of four, including our 10 & 11 year old had an amazing day on this foraging course on Bank Holiday Monday. Gary and Nicola are so knowledgeable and also patient, clear teachers. We all learned so much and I honestly feel like a new world of possibilities has opened up to us - I now feel confident foraging on my own and trying out new food and possibly even medicinal recipes. Once at the camp, Nicola set up the cooking table with everything we needed and the recipes were simple, quick to make and super delicious. The kids had a fantastic time cooking everything over the open fire and we all thoroughly enjoyed tucking into the food we'd foraged and cooked. Such a great experience. I'd highly recommend.
How lovely after lockdown to be out in a bluebell wood, cooking food from things we had foraged. A wonderful experience. Thank you
Husband and I did the 1 day foraging course. We learnt so much and it was such fun cooking and eating what we found! Now addicted to wild garlic 😀
I joined a one day Jack Raven forage in September. Well run and good balance of leadership and expertise from Gary, while encouraging group to relax and have fun. We cooked up an amazing banquet over an open fire with the spoils of our forage guided by Nicola, who subtly ensured that it came together well without ever feeling over organized.
Since that day I've been inspired and confident to forage and am loving it. I've made hedgerow jam, rosehip jelly, wild rocket pesto, quince paste, chillied damson ketchup, sweet chestnut cream. It's given me a whole new hobby which has lifted my spirits during the pandemic, combining nature with creativity. Thoroughly recommend!
Glad you enjoyed the day and it's awesome that you're out foraging and that it's helping in these difficult times. What you've made sounds delicious!!