Wild food & foraging at Brooks
Pat and his team love to explore the wild and gather the ingredients for our dishes in their purest and most natural form. Here are a few words from our head chef Pat describing his passion for foraging.
‘‘Foraging for me and the team here in Brooks is extension of what we do on a daily basis. Caring about our food is a culmination of years of experience that goes back to the first time I sucked on Honeysuckle, robbed an orchard or spent endless days on the banks of the River Bann or the Antrim coast with the brothers and friends catching fish. At the time, the only processing that followed was a proud homecoming and using the hunter gatherer skills of scaling and gutting. Cooking came later and my mother took care of that then.
Now that I can cook for myself and others, I like to go back out and find things to give a perfect sense of ‘Terrior’ to a dish. That’s a word not just refined to wine but a way to describe the sense of place to the food on offer.
A walk along the seashore will tell you what’s out in the sea as the tide washes up and deposits evidence on the shore line, some beaches have scallop shells in dominance another razor clam shells or if there’s mussel beds nearby you’ll get mussel shells, rocky shore lines. The Seaweeds wash up, dry and decompose over the years and provide rich ground for plants that provide a range of tastes, textures and colour various times from spring to autumn that bring back the essence and experience of a sea walk”.