Do you know about the native Manzanita plant and all the things they can be used for? Alicia Funk, founder of Living Wild, shared “Manzanita, an abundant evergreen shrub that grows through out the Sierra Nevada foothills and California, is often overlooked. However, its berries have a long history of use as a food, both as a cider and a sweet sugar or flour. Manzanita berries are a local superfood that can be eaten raw, used as a condiment, added to smoothies or used for baking. Manzanita only grows well under drought-tolerant conditions, another convincing reason to look no further than our backyards for a gluten-free superfood that doesn’t overuse precious water to grow.” She was recently interviewed for the movie Elevate Tahoe about foraging for food in the woods and talks specifically about manzanita, to learn more about the movie click here. Berries are available in neighborhood backyards and Manzanita sugar & flour are available at local stores including Outside Inn, Cal Organics, Natural Selection, HAALo, Ridge Café & Briarpatch. Alicia is looking for more recipes for Manzanita sugar and flour and she’s got a goodie basket to giveaway to one lucky winner. Post your favorite recipe that uses Manzanita on the Outside Inn’s blog, or if you’ve never cooked with the sugars post what you love about Manzanita for your chance to win. Winner will be announced on Wednesday, May 21st, happy to mail prize if you’re not local.
Gift basket includes: Celebrate the local landscape with this uniquely handwoven basket, made by local artists from cattail and other Sierra Nevada native plants. The basket contains seasonal Wild Food Recipe cards, California Bay Spice, Manzanita Berry Sugar, Toyon Spice, Incense Cedar Smudge and a Madrone Berry Necklace.
© 2014 InnSide Nevada City, Photos by Alicia Funk