Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Quick Bites: Eat Your Trees!

Posted By on Tue, Oct 18, 2016 at 10:07 AM

click to enlarge Grab some pomegranate, lemon and orange trees and think about how much juice you'll be able to make. - BIGSTOCK
  • BigStock
  • Grab some pomegranate, lemon and orange trees and think about how much juice you'll be able to make.

Yes, pieces of broccoli look like little trees, but that’s not at all what Mission Garden means by “edible trees,” the focus of its Fourth Annual Membrillo Fest/Edible Tree Celebration, coming up this Saturday and cosponsored by the LEAF (Linking Edible Arizona Forests) Network.

No, in this case edible trees are, of course, trees on which edible goodies grow. And the event is being held to encourage you (and your family) to plant them.

The all-ages celebration—held at a farm near A Mountain—will include exhibits, demonstrations, orchard tours, edible-tree sales (take home whatever produces your favorite produce!) and a class in making traditional cajeta de membrillo (quince paste, a Mexican dessert or snack taken at tea time) and quince jam. The class will be taught by Josefina Lizárraga, a Tucson artist, master cook and edible-plant cultivator (she’s got a whole garden full of edible and medicinal flora, including… pineapples). If you take the class, you get the added benefit of tasting as much quince paste and jam as you want (but OK, Lizárraga will probably let you taste it even if you’re not really participating in the class part).

So come on down to the festival, buy some “edible trees” to take home and plant—and once you can eat what they’re producing, you can skip the broccoli a little more often.

The Membrillo Fest takes place Sat., Oct. 22, from 2–5 p.m., at 929 W. Mission Lane. It’s free.

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