Thursday, June 18, 2009

Morel Mushrooms

When I first heard people talking about how excited they were to go mushroom hunting this summer, I automatically assumed I was hearing hippies going looking for "wacky 'shrooms".  But then more and more people started heading to their "secret spots" looking for these mushrooms.  People are talking in the grocery store about primo conditions, they are late this year, etc and so forth.  I have gathered by this point that we're not dealing with trippy heady 'shrooms, we are in fact dealing with some sort of delicacy gourmet food.  At this point, I am still not seeing what the big deal with these mushrooms are, but I'm throughly intrigued. 

So when Josh took me to his secret mushroom patch, I was very excited to be a part of this which I've heard so much about.  I was never any good at "Where's Waldo" or "I Spy" books.  I'm terrible at finding proverbial needles in haystacks. Hell, I can't find my keys half the time! But I went, because he was very excited and I wanted to see what all the hype was about.  We drove around a few places, and looked a little, to no avail and then we went to his "sure fire" spot and started to spot a few.  I had only an hour to play before I had to go meet my friend Brandy, so I was unable to get the FULL experience, but I did find three!! 
I left and Josh continued picking.  After I went climbing, we met back at my house and proceeded to cook a meal with said mushrooms. 

I don't like mushrooms of any other variety. 

I at the best meal of my life that night. 

Josh had a T-bone marinated in garlic and red wine.  I had roasted eggplant marinated in garlic, red wine, a dash of salt and pepper.
The mushrooms were sauteed in butter, garlic and salt for about 20 minutes.  I poured some of the buttery sauce over my eggplant before I took it out of the oven.
I put the mushrooms on top of my roasted eggplant, sat down with a glass of red wine, took one bite and fell in love! 

I cannot do justice to how savory and succulent this fungus is.  I now know why people keep their spots a secret and talk about it for weeks. I will no longer judge mushroom hunters to be stupid hippies... Morel Mushrooms are divine! 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Ahhh, welcome to the West. (although, apparently morels are found elsewhere as well). Saute those morels in some butter, salt and a little sherry (I have a bottle just for the occasion when I find morels. Don't drink it at all otherwise). And if you want to make a pasta sauce, add some cream. YUMMO. Julie (Dreher)