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  • Any mushroom hunters out there?

    Just thought I'd see if there are any mushroom hunters out there. If so what are you finding and what are your favorites, maybe share recipes.

    We just love finding mushrooms, bringing them home and making tasty meals with them. This last week we discovered Black Trumpets, they are now my new favorite. Yesterday I found Horn of Plenty which are also good but not quite as flavorful as the trumpets. Both can be dried which is nice.

    We are heading out this afternoon to see we can collect some more before the rains come.
    Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

  • #2
    I grew up hunting morels in southern Illinois and my mouth still waters at the thought of them. Sure wish they would grow in south Florida!
    "If we’re not supposed to eat animals, how come they’re made out of meat?" - Tom Snyder, talk show host

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    • #3
      I find chanterelles, Hericium ramosa, small and giant puffballs so far. Chanterelles are easy to figure out how to prepare. Hericium more difficult. The ones I found were kinda dry so not good. Next year I know where to find them so I can get them fresh. Pan-fried in butter works for those. Puffballs are surprisingly good in soup.

      I have a mushroom expert friend and he jokes someday we'll do a backpack trip across the state of Washington with only a cast iron skillet and a couple pounds of butter. He's actually not quite joking. I'd definitely be up for it.
      Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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      • #4
        Morels! I still haven't had them and I so want to!

        This was a good year for chanterelles and you pretty much can't go wrong cooking them. I love the idea of hiking and cooking, 2 of my favorite things.
        Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by sbhikes View Post
          I have a mushroom expert friend and he jokes someday we'll do a backpack trip across the state of Washington with only a cast iron skillet and a couple pounds of butter. He's actually not quite joking. I'd definitely be up for it.
          Sounds like quite an adventure vacation to me!
          "If we’re not supposed to eat animals, how come they’re made out of meat?" - Tom Snyder, talk show host

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          • #6
            Definitely...hunted ever since I was very little. Out here in CA favorites are chanterelles, morels, oysters, porcini, and coccoras (insert obligatory "Amanitas can be dangerous" disclaimer here). Afraid I'm not much for recipes, though, as I never get much past frying them in butter or using in cream sauces
            6' 2" | Age: 42 | SW: 341 | CW: 198 | GW: 180?

            “Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.”
            ― Søren Kierkegaard

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            • #7
              Almost morel season here in Michigan! I am foaming at the mouth with anticipation.

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              • #8
                There are a lot of mushroom hunters here in NW Washington where I am and it's always looked like a fun hobby.

                I spend an hour or two a day walking through the forest anyway for relaxation/slow movement, so it would be cool to be collecting primal food at the same time. I do love buttery mushrooms.

                I just have a hard time with the idea of screwing up and poisoning the family.

                I've thought about buying a stack of books/videos to learn what I'm doing, but I think it would take a few trips with a seasoned pro showing me the ropes and answering questions before I'd have the confidence to eat them.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by NWPrimate View Post

                  I've thought about buying a stack of books/videos to learn what I'm doing, but I think it would take a few trips with a seasoned pro showing me the ropes and answering questions before I'd have the confidence to eat them.
                  I like David Arora's All That the Rain Promises and More, it's pocket size and has great photos. If you can find a class in identifying mushrooms that's even better, then you can learn what mushrooms grow in your area. In the meantime you can familiarize yourself with the methods of identifying mushrooms and then when you go for your walks you may find you recognise some of them.

                  Like you we walk in the woods just about every day and being able to gather food at the same time has added an extra dimension to our walks. I think you will really enjoy it.
                  Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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                  • #10
                    I've always wanted to hunt them also, but then remember my Biology teacher in HS telling us about his friend who was a mushroom expert - wrote books and all, dying from a poisonous mushroom...

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Urban Forager View Post
                      Like you we walk in the woods just about every day and being able to gather food at the same time has added an extra dimension to our walks. I think you will really enjoy it.
                      I'm sure I'd enjoy it. I've had a strong "hunter-gatherer" instinct as long as I can remember. Nothing is more satisfying that bringing home some fish that I had a blast catching. I can't tell you how many hours I spent as a kid catching frogs, snakes, crawfish...just about anything. As an adult, I realized that my fishing obsession was just a way to continue my love of "messing with animals".

                      I took my son berry picking at the end of last summer, and it was a wonderful experience.

                      Even before going paleo/primal I realized that any time I engaged in these activities, or even gathering wood on a camping trip, I get a deep sense of what can be described as "this is what we're supposed to be doing".

                      That said, I still have a healthy fear of eating a poisonous mushroom. I know anecdotes like the biology professor story stick in our head even though we never hear about the thousands of great meals people have without incident, but it's still quite unsettling to think of poisoning yourself or family.

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                      • #12
                        I think every one has heard horrible stories of mushroom poisonings. It's too bad because there are very few mushrooms that are dangerous. The thing to do is learn form some one who is very experienced and not get reckless and try and eat anything unless you are 100% sure you know what it is. It is a good idea to start with a mushroom that is easy to identify like chanterelles.

                        Foraging is so satisfying, like you said, for berries or wood, it just feels right. I love it when I find a forgotten fruit tree in abandoned lot, it's like a gift.
                        Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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                        • #13
                          I Googled Florida mushrooms and apparently hallucinogenic mushrooms are really popular here. Who knew. Apparently they grow wild in cow pastures and people can get arrested for having them but only if they know what they are. If you don't know what they are I guess it's okay to eat them and then "hear colors". Pass.

                          So when do the yummy ones start growing in Washington?
                          "If we’re not supposed to eat animals, how come they’re made out of meat?" - Tom Snyder, talk show host

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                          • #14
                            The key to getting started is to search for mushrooms that have no poisonous look-alikes or whose look-alikes are easy to identify by sight. I wouldn't try eating anything I had to ID with a microscopic exam of the spores. For fun I ID mushrooms I am pretty sure I don't want to eat just for the practice. I use David Arora's Mushrooms Demystified and take lots of pictures from all angles. I send the pics with my ID and explain why I came to my conclusion to my friend who is happy to confirm my ID. So far I have been right every time.
                            Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                            • #15
                              That Arora book is top notch. Comprehensive, with much more humor than you'd expect.

                              Found on my hike yesterday:


                              The chanterelles are ginormous out here, although they have a nasty habit of surrounding themselves with poison oak
                              6' 2" | Age: 42 | SW: 341 | CW: 198 | GW: 180?

                              “Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.”
                              ― Søren Kierkegaard

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