Morel season is upon us once again!
I'm not sure how excited that makes you but it literally makes me squirm in delight!
I have kept an eye out for these little beauties for a few seasons now. A couple of years back I decided to start taking baby steps toward becoming a reasonably competent mushroom hunter. It's for sure something I aspire to be good at ;)
The obstacles I am facing are time and places to hunt.
Time ... well I probably don't have to explain that one to most of you. We are all lacking in this area, LOL!
Places to hunt ... I am surrounded by state and national parks. You can't forage there 😔 And most other land here is privately owned.
Soooooo ... the morel mushroom might as well be some reclusive, forest dwelling creature to me!
And then ...
I met a new friend at the gym.
Her significant other is a mushroom hunter!
Ahhhhhhhh ... Lady Luck has turned her smile upon me ❤️❤️❤️
As if meeting a great friend (I really do like her a lot) and finding out that her significant other hunts mushrooms is not lucky enough, it just so happened that he returned from a morel hunting trip a short time after our meeting. Life is good!
I was able to pick up a pound of fresh morel mushrooms at a great price, and trust me that made my day. Well, maybe my week. Probably, definitely my week 😉🍄😉🍄
I FINALLY had the chance to cook fresh morels.
I could touch them. Smell them. Sit quietly and admire them.
I could clean them. Chop them. Season and saute them. I could stand with them as they cooked, soaking in the delightful aroma they emit as they simmer. Oh my! If only the net had a scratch & sniff feature ... You would be in heaven right now!
How do you cook morel mushrooms, you ask?
I'm sure there are MANY ways to prepare these little beauties. But I kept it pretty simple. I wanted to really savor the taste of them the first time I ate them. I didn't want them to be smothered in sauce or buried in seasonings.
So I put half a stick of butter in a large frying pan with about 3 large cloves of garlic, and threw in the whole pound of mushrooms. I covered them and let them simmer on a low setting for about 20 minutes.
Morels need to be cooked well or they can make you a bit sick. No one wants that! It works out though because they don't get tough or rubbery when they are cooked for long periods of time 😉
After 20 minutes the pan was pretty full of liquid. Mushrooms always lose a great deal of water while cooking. I drained the water off and threw in just a bit of salt. Salt is a flavor enhancer and ... well ... as I've already said, I for sure wanted to REALLY TASTE these little beauties!
I cooked them with very minimal liquid. Like really hardly any at all for another 5 minutes or so, and then I served them with roasted, organic bell pepper and onion and fresh, organic mild Italian sausage.
They were SERIOUSLY delicious! Now I know why everyone raves about them!
The experience left me with just one pretty serious issue ...
Where oh where am I going to find a patch of fresh morel mushrooms to harvest next spring?
That concludes our journey through the delightfully tasty world of morel mushrooms ...
I hope it has been as much fun for you as it has been for me ...
I am itching to hear from those of you who have eaten these elusive gifts from Mama Nature ...
And from those who have not had the opportunity to indulge in these treats but would like to nonetheless as well ...
I wouldn't mind hearing from those who wouldn't eat a morel if it was served to them on a silver platter either ...
Let's meet in the comments and talk a bit about morel mushrooms!
Travel with me on this journey we call life ...
May good fortune chase you throughout ALL of your days!
Bountiful Blessings ~ Diane