by Samantha Keene: Could you recognize a cashew tree in the wild, or a black pepper vine? How about a mango tree?
We all know what an apple tree looks like, and can recognize a cabbage patch when we see one, but many of our favourite foods appear vastly different in their natural forms, as they go through a remarkable transformation to get from field to table.
The below photo series features some of our favourite foods as they appear in nature. You might be surprised to see the startling beauty of the saffron flower, or the sheer size of a cacao bean, and this unfamiliarity stands as testament, I think, to how far removed we have become from the natural world and from food production. Many of us would probably walk right on by some of these plants without realizing that food was near — an ignorance which could prove to detrimental in a survival setting. And in the same way that cows have become ‘beef’ and pigs have become ‘pork,’ most fruits and spices have been divorced from their true forms, and with that separation comes a kind of collective amnesia; we forget that each strand of saffron must be carefully parted from its blossom, or every pistachio prized from its pod. And we wonder why some of these items are so expensive!
Let the below images show you just how miraculous nature is and serve as a reminder that every piece of food you enjoy is a gift of the earth — and the product of hard work! Enjoy!