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From the Sequoia National Forest of California, check out our latest recipes and thoughts.

Kids taste scorpion candy

Kids taste scorpion candy

“We can just eat it but not eat the scorpion part. Are you with me?” asks Alastair and the boys set off on their goal wondering if the dead and dried scorpion is going to sting them while they suck on the sucker. The kids also crowd source an answer to the important question: “Does…

Here are three methods to preserve your lemons with salt!

Here are three methods to preserve your lemons with salt!

Since you are even looking at this post, I assume you either love North African food or you have 337 ripe lemons on your tree in the backyard and you’re wondering what in the world to do with them. I offer you three tasty ideas. Preserved lemons sound exotic to those of us in North…

Opening a can of Pillsbury crescent rolls, like a jack-in-the-box?

Opening a can of Pillsbury crescent rolls, like a jack-in-the-box?

Inspired by the popular Facebook meme, the Half Pints opened a tube of Pillsbury crescent rolls for the first time. Do you remember the first time? It had been many years since I’d even been around a can of rolls or biscuits that I have to admit, it was a lot of fun and brought…

Herbs for hair loss in a lesson from India

Herbs for hair loss in a lesson from India

Amanda’s note: Here is another wonderful contribution from Ramya Venkateshwaran who writes from her home in India. Ramya describes traditional remedies for hair loss. Find her on her website WildTurmeric.net for more ideas on healthy living. ~~~Hair loss is a common problem for both men and women and it is only increasing over the years….

Kids taste “ant candy” and even survive

Kids taste “ant candy” and even survive

What would kids do if faced with tasting ant candy? The Half Pints work it out, eating as little ant as possible. Some quotes: “I think I tasted a little bit of ant!” “Can we get this candy without ants?” “Why would people want to eat ant candy?

 Flavors of the Forest

Take a walk and find something edible. Taste it in a tea. Taste it in a soda. Taste it in a cocktail. ;) Taste it. Check out these tasting ideas. (Read more about our flavors here.)


Chilled Elderberry Soup

Chilled Elderberry Soup

Since discovering the wisdom of consuming elderberry shots and elderberry tea to strengthen our immune systems, we are finding wild elderberries in places unnoticed –under our noses but unnoticed until now. Having this sort of bounty allows us to experiment a wee bit, looking for new ways to consume more elderberries. That’s how I came…

Dandelion muffins for a springy teatime treat

Dandelion muffins for a springy teatime treat

We have had access to dandelions since March but it is late spring here when the meadows in the higher elevations in the Sequoia National Forest are bursting with them. The Sequoia National Forest office allows us to harvest them for our own consumption and so we do. We leave plenty behind for the wild…

Chamomile tea hike plus a great night-time tea

Chamomile tea hike plus a great night-time tea

Preschoolers are often easily entertained, as evidenced by our recent “Chamomile Tea Hike.” My 4-year-old did not realize that the same chamomile tea he loves to drink at night time is an easily found “weed” in many parts of California. The look of our local variety is distinct. After one identification, my son has come…

Elderberry Tea for Flavor and Health

Elderberry Tea for Flavor and Health

With our focus on building our immune systems this flu season, elderberry is an important tool. It can help prevent getting the flu or perhaps can help reduce our symptoms. In our own area we can actually harvest wild elderberries and make syrup that we freeze for the winter. It is that syrup we use…

A lilac-infused butter cookie

A lilac-infused butter cookie

It’s a fun time of year when the edible flowers begin their blooming fanfare. Spring came a bit early to California but if these flowers are still shivering in your area, you have a few weeks to think about these cookies. Harvesting lilacs as edibles is simple: Cut a dozen flowers and remove their blossoms…

What's Hot

Whether it's a forest flavor, a turmeric flavor from India, or grandma's simple salad, these are the most popular posts on our site.

Friends thought Hidden Valley had stolen this ranch dressing from us but it’s a classic that predates the bottle…

Friends thought Hidden Valley had stolen this ranch dressing from us but it’s a classic that predates the bottle…

Who doesn’t love ranch salad dressing? Homemade ranch dressing is that much better. Ranch dressing may be the most requested dressing in restaurants. Before ranch dressing became a commercial blockbuster, I made this type of dressing for sandwiches at home. When Hidden Valley hit the market some decades ago, my friends thought Hidden Valley had…

Five teas to improve your blood pressure (that actually taste good) and forest fire pictures as a bonus…

Five teas to improve your blood pressure (that actually taste good) and forest fire pictures as a bonus…

I knew I had hit that “middle age” milestone pretty squarely when I had to think about this issue at all. Through my younger years, my blood pressure was an enviable 105/65. Of course, a number of demographic factors have lined up against me since, namely advancing age and weight. Those demographic factors were lined…

Inexpensive and tasty onion and garlic powders

Inexpensive and tasty onion and garlic powders

It is so convenient to pull powdered onion or garlic off the shelf to add to soups and sauces but the quality of the powder is not always what you would hope. For improved quality and potentially as a cost-savings, you should consider making your own. I realize this is one of those tasks in…

A super-hot salve to tame your arthritis pain

A super-hot salve to tame your arthritis pain

Leave it to nature to provide remedies for the things that ail us. This particular one grows wild in Mexico and has become a staple here in California and throughout the southwest. Known as being some of the hottest peppers on earth, they are not for the faint of heart. Before this summer I had…

These simple citrus salts may make you very popular among your friends…

These simple citrus salts may make you very popular among your friends…

Last year I was inspired by Heidi Swanson’s post to make my own citrus salts. The process is such a no-brainer, drop-dead easy one! Heidi offers suggestions on how to most enjoy these salts as “finishing” salts on things like avocado slices. I was inspired. It took me a whole year to work on the…


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