Time to go Hunting for Those Elusive Mushrooms

Posted by admin On May - 19 - 2011

While it’s not technically hunting, one beautiful aspect of our piece of the country is the fact that we can go out and do some foraging while we’re in the woods.

Depending on what time of year it is, there are a large variety of options for outdoorsmen to consider while they are out in the woods. This time of year, it’s really just one thing on our mind: morel mushrooms.

These little delicacies only make a short appearance in the northeast and May tends to be the month that they are the most easily found. They tend to like areas with good leaf cover and are known to really come up after a good rain followed by nice, warm weather.

The beauty of morel mushrooms for the hunter is that there are few things that go better with wild game than some wild mushrooms on the side.

The trick to finding these little bundles of tasty goodness? It really depends on who you ask. Some will tell you that dead elm trees are the morel’s favorite location to grow, while others will swear up and down that your best bet is to find some apple trees and start looking there. Others will tell you that ash—and sometimes only ash!—trees are the way to leading yourself to a patch of morels.

The truth of the matter is, there is no scientific method to finding morel mushrooms. Sure, hardwoods are better than pine trees, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find the little buggers hiding where the red pines grow, however.

A morel, it seems, grows where it wants to grow. One tip that we live by, however, is that once we find one morel, we take the time to look for others and, typically, visit the same area several times over the course of the growing season (which, by the way, doesn’t run far into June). Why? As the old adage goes: where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Mushrooms are a fungus. They grow together. You’re likely not going to just find one or two that randomly happened in an area, but rather several if you keep your eyes peeled and are patient.

Since you’re no doubt wondering what we suggest for serving up the mushrooms, let’s just say this: Keep it simple. Clean them, cut them in half, pat them dry with paper towel and then sauté them in butter until they are softened. Have them with some nice venison steak, if you have it, and a beautiful, yet mild, red wine. That, friends, is the perfect meal.

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