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First Time Mushroom Hunting

Jun 17, 2011

I didn't need another hobby, but I found a new one last weekend in morel mushroom hunting. And it combines two things I already enjoy — hiking and eating healthy, unusual foods.

It's no secret morels are in season but I've quickly found that good hunting areas are guarded and even coveted. My husband Jeremy and I decided to try our luck at this muddy Easter egg hunt in a wooded area outside of town. We found almost five pounds after about an hour and a half of searching.

Don't even ask me where they were. The only person we've told the true location to is my Dad. He's got better things to do besides crawling around in the dirt and he promised not to tell anyone.

We plan to eat these treasures every night this week. Does anybody have any good recipes?                                       

Comments

11:56 am - Wed, June 1 2011
Heidi said:
Looks like fun Rebecca!
03:05 am - Sun, June 12 2011
Randy Otto said:
The first time I went hunting morels I took mine and some of the neighborhood kids under the assumption that eyes closer to the ground would yield favorable results. I was not wrong...but we never came close to 5 plus lbs. Sweet. I was told that to prepare them you should soak them in salty water to drive the small critters out. Then I made a batter out of beer and flour and fried or deep fried them, can't remember as I sampled the beer part of the batter first and my wife took over the cooking.
08:12 am - Tue, June 14 2011
Rebecca Johnson said:
We did soak them in salt water. That seemed to get rid of any bugs but I still found a few tiny snails when I was getting them ready for cooking! We never did fry them. We sauteed them in olive oil and they were best with some green onions.
07:24 pm - Wed, March 21 2012
Christine said:
Do the morel mushrooms grow around Sioux Falls?
12:22 pm - Thu, March 22 2012
Laura said:
Perhaps, Christine -- but no morel hunter is apt to tell you where to look. Check wooded areas near rivers and lakes. Have you seen our March/April issue? Rebecca shared some of her morel-seeking tips there.
06:47 am - Sun, August 5 2012
Shroom Lover said:
Use a knife and cut any desired mushroom rather than the method of pinching them off at the ground or in your case pulling them. The ball or "root" that is just underground is the plant and the mushroom you pick is the fruit of the plant. If you do not disturb the plant it will produce again, but if you pull it out of the ground it will die and you will not see it produce another morel.

We would all like to find five pounds of morels. But this can't happen if hunters do not take care in how they gather these delicacies. Please remember to also leave some for seed and never take more than you really need.
09:55 am - Tue, May 7 2013
Mary said:
I agree with Shroom Lover...educate yourself on the proper way to hun morels so there are some for the future!
07:14 am - Wed, May 8 2013
Rebecca said:
Thanks for your thoughtful comments about mushroom hunting. I've done more research since this was posted about whether to cut or pull the entire mushroom. You are right. It is best to cut the mushroom off at the dirt. But I was told by Tom Nauman of Morel Mania, Inc that the belief that another will grow in the same spot next year if is a myth. Mushrooms release spores and that is what new mushrooms grow from. A new mushroom will not grow from a root left behind.

"Pulling the mushroom out of the ground will not have any effect on what happens at that spot next year," says Nauman. The roots, or hypha, that connect the mushroom to the underground mycelium will freeze over winter and not be present next year anyway.

It does, however, affect what happens to mushrooms during the current season. The hypha that connects the mushroom you pick to the mycelium also connects other mushrooms to the same mycelium. "if you destroy the hypha of the mushroom you're picking, you're eliminating the means the other mushrooms have of getting nutrients," Nauman says.

Cutting at ground level is also just a good idea. It makes the mushrooms much easier to clean. Looking back, I'm sure I didn't actually pick 5 pounds of mushrooms. A good percentage of that weight was actually dirt.
12:10 pm - Thu, April 21 2016
Chad said:
Fill with cheese wiz wrap in bacon and stick them in the oven! yummmmmm!!!

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