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Skirret (Sium sisarum)

A plant grown for its large white roots, and originally native to Eastern Asia. It became popular in England during the 17th century - being called 'skywort' (this being a corruption of the Dutch 'zuikerwortel' (sugar root).

As fashions changed it fell out of favour; but if found, or grown, it should be treated in the same manner as salsify. It's sometimes called a 'water parsnip' or 'crummock'. Seeds are available from Chiltern Seeds, Cumbria (01229-581137).

If you enjoy cooking take a minute to look at ‘Simon Scrutton French Cookery Classes’ on Google – and learn how to make top class bistro-style dishes. Suitable for beginners upwards. Small classes.

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