Today's Quote

“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Morel Mushroom Hunting

The Morel Mushroom is a springtime ritual in many areas of the country. This great mushroom grows freely in the wild, is large, and has the taste and texture of meat. One of my ambitions is to go morel hunting. My only problem is my fear of identifying the wrong mushroom and winding up in the morgue as a consequence. The good thing about morels is that they are very distinctive, there are organized hunts with experienced hunters that you could tag along with. I am sure when I gather my courage that I will tag along with experienced shroomers for my first several times. Morels grow in most areas of the country with the exception of the dry arid southwest and the southern coastal regions. Springtime is usually the best time to find them as it is warm and damp, perfect mushroom weather. Apparently for those chickens like me, morels can also be grown in your backyard. There are several suppliers that will give details about setting up and also provide spores or mushrooms to start your morel growing off. I do think it would be fun to just harvest them from nature, but I do strongly advice that you know what you are looking for. There is a mushroom called a false morel that is one bad dude. It is very similar to a morel, but it will hurt you. The main difference is that the cap of the false morel is usually a dark reddish black and rather lump and ugly. The cap of the true morel is a nice cone shape and very uniform. It is either grey when immature or a slight yellow when mature. The false morel has a solid stem. If you slice into it then you will not see a hollow space. The true morel when sliced in half lengthwise has a hollow stem all the way through to the tip top of the cap. So think about this spring taking a journey through the woods this spring with some experienced shroomers and letting nature provide your supper. I highly recommend visiting The Great Morel website to learn all about where to find the morel, hunts that may go on in your area, how to harvest them, grow them and how to use them once you have them. It is a great website and if you are serious about shrooming it is definitely the place to go to learn.

No comments: