fiddlehead fern

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
Related to fiddlehead fern: ostrich fern
Enlarge picture


This is a debatable plant. Must eat cooked or steamed, not raw, although some people do eat fiddleheads raw and end up getting throat and gastric cancers. Fiddleheads are the young furled (coiled up) heads of a young fern. Asians dip them into boiling water, then dry them and then grind them into powder, and whenever they cook food, they add that powder to their food. Apparently it helps emulsify and break down bad fats in the body. You can chop up the stem and steam it, tastes similar to green beans, can be eaten with a little bit of butter and salt. To cook fiddleheads, remove the yellow/brown skin, then boil the sprouts twice with a change of water between boilings to remove toxins. The roots of the common Male Fern (Dryopteris filix-mas), was used to kill tapeworms, but many consider it too toxic. When using ferns, consult with local expert to double check. Some are carcinogenic.
Edible Plant Guide © 2012 Markus Rothkranz
References in periodicals archive ?
During May 25-28, NYSDOH conducted a telephone survey of persons who had eaten at the restaurant on days fiddlehead ferns were served (May 6,7, and 18).
Almost everyone has heard of "fiddlehead ferns," a gourmet wild vegetable found across much of North America in the springtime.
She talks of eating fiddlehead ferns from the far east of Russia, where her father was born, to foraging out of necessity, because, in the Soviet days "you had so little in the shops".
Ugu's specialty is Ensaladang Pako, fiddlehead ferns with mixed greens and fruits drizzled with calamansi juice, fish sauce and sugar, and Kulawo, which is banana heart with smoky coconut dressing topped with edible Ternate flower.
Its most recommended dish is the mouth-watering slow-cooked Mangalica Pork, cubed and served with Jade Tiger Abalone, fermented cabbage, crunchy fiddlehead ferns, spongy hasu-imo, seaweed and pork broth.
The wild geranium she found in her woods has completely colonized the compost layer covering her woodshed, along with fiddlehead ferns and local se' dum.
The number of foraged plants that can be pickled may surprise you: daylily buds, fiddlehead ferns, garlic bulbs, crab apples and more.
Whether noticing her father's love for Leonard Cohen's music and her mother's for Bob Dylan's, or her father's view of fiddlehead ferns as a culinary delicacy and her own view of them as evidence of poverty, Shell's observations are astute reminders that nothing gets past a child.
The woodland is alive with wild ingredients, including fiddlehead ferns, wild garlic, berries, lampascioni (an edible wild hyacinth bulb) and cardoons.
Next up were plump local mussels, which were again presented with refreshing simplicity, this time on a bed of skillfully balanced roasted pumpkin puree and pork broth, topped with fiddlehead ferns and crunchy chicharon.
Roses represent the boy's face, while protea suggest the faces of the goats, whose curly horns are fiddlehead ferns. The large sheep in the foreground of the painting are the focal point, bringing calm to the scene despite the threat of inclement weather.
She carried a bouquet of circus roses and fiddlehead ferns with stems tied in eggshell ribbon and adorned with a vintage brooch and golden locket enclosing a picture of her late grandfather.