494: Kelly Athena on Wild Desert Cuisine.

Foraging and harvesting edible plants.

In This Podcast:

Explore the abundance of the desert with Cactus Kelly Athena. Normally a teacher and wild desert cuisine harvester, Kelly will open your eyes to ways you could be eating the native plants in your area or harvesting them and selling to local chefs and restaurants. After this episode, you’ll be harvesting your neighborhood trees to try desert edamame, mesquite flour, nopales, and prickly pear! Also, she explains the environmental and social benefits of hyperlocal cuisine.

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Our Guest:

Kelly AthenaKelly grew up loving nature in Northern California and moved to Phoenix in 1986. She holds a Master’s Degree in Music and Photography, and is a Master Gardener of Maricopa County. She was named Arizona Photographer of the year in 2000, and especially enjoys photographing nature. Five years ago, she began hosting plant walks to help people learn to identify and sustainably harvest wild plants. Then she was dubbed “Cactus Kelly.” Kelly is especially interested in desert bean trees such as the Palo Verde, Mesquite, and Ironwood trees as well as edible cacti and weeds. She harvests wild desert cuisine for restaurants and chefs in the area, makes prickly pear juice and powder, and teaches desert foraging in schools and at the Desert Botanical Garden.


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