Friday, September 17, 2010

Foraged Mushrooms

Shannon and I took a whole extra day off work to celebrate our anniversary in style this year. We got a little cabin on a lake near the village of Falkland, British Columbia. During our two nights andd three day stay we got up to all sorts of fun such. We ate and drank like royalty in our little cabin, as one might have expected that we did. However, eating alone was not enough to keep us occupied.

We brought our beautiful little beagle Stella along with us, she is a bigger fan of the outdoors than anyone I know so there was no way we could rob her the opportunity of a nature walk. We started off on what was to be a one to two hour jaunt around some old logging roads and knowing Stella, a little bush whacking as well. About 30 seconds into our walk we saw the first of what was about to become a plethora of shaggy mane's. We decided that we would pick some on the way back to the cabin so as not to crush them. I must admit we were rather unprepared for foraging, carrying nothing but a backpack and all. A few zigs and zags led us to a dirt path that seemed to be used mostly by ATV's and such. As we walked along this path we started to really look for mushrooms, and I'm glad that we did. We found all sort, none of which we recognized straight away, that is of course until we started seeing all the Boletus that were peaking through the underbrush.

We are not mushroom experts at all, but I do know what a Bolete looks like and I know that most are edible. The most prized Bolete of course is the King Bolete(Cep, Porcini) and I can say with most certainty that of what we found about half of them were Porcini. Our two hour walk turned into five very quickly, but know one was complaining, definitely not Stella.

We ended up picking just over six pounds of boletes, not bad for an afternoon walk. Before we, or anyone for that matter, got to eating any of these mushrooms we had to get home and find out for sure what we had, so after checking with all our books and double checking on the interweb, plus doing spore prints and the whole nine yard, we determined that they were all safe to eat. So we ate, and I'm here typing now a few days later. Success. It will soon be time for Pine Mushrooms, We are all very excited to get up in the hills and root around on our hands and knees looking for one of autumn's greatest gifts.

Stay posted, hopefully we will have more good finds in the near future. Oh, and if you can tell me for sure if these are Porcini or not that would be great.

Sean Peltier.

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