Friday, September 25, 2009

Call Out For Recipes!!!!

working on a recipe for fresh corn tamales with mushrooms

Dear Nettletown Readers -

I would love to hear from your kitchens and homes with a recipe for your favorite wild mushroom dish. It is always nice to see other peoples approaches to food and flavors. If I choose to publish it on this blog I will gift you a pound of chanterelles or a 2010 calendar, your choice, and ship them if need be. Send it over to by October 10th and let me know where you live. Can't wait to see 'em!!

This Week at Foraged and Found Edibles 9/25

We have entered the prime time for chanterelles - abundant but still dry with the price low and affordable. The mushroom booth is filled with other interesting edibles like white chanterelles and the occasional chicken-of-the-woods. The air is cooler, winter squash and cauliflower are showing up in farmer's stalls and it seems the switch has flipped towards craving the fall mushroom harvest. Market customers are filling their bags high for fall feasts and for gifts to friends and family.

This week at the market -

Gold Chanterelles
King Boletes

Friday, September 18, 2009

This Week at Foraged and Found Edibles 8/18

This is the time of year when we start a mix and match program at the markets- gold and white chanterelles, and lobsters are all the same price. If we have other mushrooms like hedgehogs or boletes they may be added into the mix too. It gives you a good reason to try all varieties and you can throw them all in the same bag.

We will have this weekend at the markets -
Porcini - small amounts so come early
Gold Chanterelles
White Chanterelles

This years berries are huge, juicy, and sweet!

picture perfect

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Lobster Mushrooms Two Ways

Lobster mushrooms are the story of a special bond. A relationship between two fungi joined together, growing with cells intertwined. Edible, but not choice, Russala and Lactarious species are parasitized by Hypomyces lactifluorum and transformed into a delicious beautiful mushroom.

Lobster mushrooms are characterized by their bright orange-red skin, flower-like shapes and firm nutty flesh. The skin really is as bright as a cooked lobster and the scent is even reminiscent of shellfish's nutty rich seaward aroma. Lobsters are a versatile mushroom lending well to simple sauteing or roasting and its firm flesh also holds up well in longer cooking preparations like braising.

Lobster mushrooms often grow pushing up through the first layer of needles and decaying leaves, embedding their tops with dirt and debris. The best way to clean is to rinse in water and use a pairing knife to scrape away any dirt set in the cap. The flesh is dense and firm and barely soaks up any extra moisture from washing.

Both of these recipes are super quick and easy and can be served warm, room temp, or cold. They are also nice to make in bulk for a few days of ready-to-go, prepared dishes to eat with rice or noodles.

Lobster mushrooms roasted with zucchini, cherry tomatoes and cumin seeds

1 medium lobster mushroom, about 1/3 pound, cleaned and cut in 1/2 inch dice
1 medium zucchini, about 1/3 pound, cut in ½ inch dice
1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp cumin seeds
¼ tsp salt
1 ½ tbsp olive oil
large pinch curry powder
2 dashes soy sauce
½ pt cherry tomatoes

Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a small baking pan (9” by 9”) toss all ingredients together except cherry tomatoes. Bake for about 25 minutes, until vegetables begin to brown, stirring occasionally. Depending on the moisture content of the vegetables this could take a bit longer. Add cherry tomatoes and bake for 5 more minutes.

Japanese-style simmered lobster mushrooms

This recipe would work well with almost any mushroom.

½ pound lobster mushrooms, cleaned and sliced into ¼ inch thick pieces
2-3 shallots or a small onion, sliced thick
2 tbsp sesame oil
3 tbsp sake
2 tbsp mirin
2 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

Heat sesame oil in a small pot over medium heat. Add shallots or onions and saute for 2 minutes. Add lobsters and saute for one more. Stir in sake, mirin, and soy. Turn up heat a bit and bring to a simmer. Turn down and simmer for about 8 minutes until mushrooms are tender and liquid has reduced a bit. Serve sprinkled with sesame seeds.

Friday, September 11, 2009

This Week at Foraged and Found Edibles 9/11/09

The abundance of Autumn foraging is here. I know it isn't quite fall yet but the slight chill in the air, the cooler nights, and a scattering (or a downpour) of rain has brought the mushrooms out.
So far it is a steady year for chanterelles and lobsters. Good quantities, great quality. White chanterelles are fruiting in large amounts right now. Some years their aren't too many of these white beauties but this year its definitely a flush. On the other hand, porcini that usually grow high elevation in the mountains are not fruiting much right now, unfortunately. Hopefully we will see a good coastal crop next month.

This weekend at the markets -

Gold Chanterelles
White Chanterelles
Lobster mushrooms
Huckleberries - Probably here for the last week

Come early to the markets and we may have small amounts of mushrooms like chicken of the woods, porcini, and hedgehogs.
PSMS Wild Mushroom Show is October 17th and 18th

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Pickled Huckleberries

It is near the end of huckleberry season and it is time to add something else to your huckleberry preservation repertoire other than jams and bulk freezing. Pickled huckleberries are sweet, tangy, richly flavored and a versatile condiment. Not only are these utterly delicious, it is very easy and fast to make. Some of the many possible uses -Toss berries in salads, purree berries and brine with olive oil for a viniagrette, add to a pan sauce with game meats, serve along side duck liver pate, or to top a smoked salmon and goat cheese crostini. Use the pickling brine like a flavored vinegar or add along with the berries to the dish.

In either of these recipes add to, or substitute part of, the huckleberries with sliced shallots for extra flavor and crunch. One pound huckleberries will fit in four 8-ounce jars or two pint jars.

Pickled huckleberries with star anise, coriander seeds and chilies

1 pound huckleberries (about 3 cups), washed
1 cup sugar
2/3 cups red wine vinegar
2/3 cups water
2 tsp whole coriander seeds
4 small star anise
2-4 spicy chilies, dried or fresh (use thin fleshed chilies such as fresh cayenne or smoky chilies such as guajillo)
1/2 tsp salt
sliced shallot, optional

prepared canning jars

Divide huckleberries between jars with shallots if desired. Cut a small slit in small chilies to aid in flavoring the brine or tear large chilies into pieces. Place vinegar, sugar, water, spices, chilies, and salt in a small pan and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 7 -10 minutes and pour over huckleberries, dividing brine and spices evenly between jars. Cover and let sit for at least one day before using. Refrigerate up to 2 months. For longer preservation cool brine before adding to berries and process jars in a hot water bath for ten minutes.

Pickled huckleberries with apple cider vinegar, juniper, and fennel

1 pound huckleberries, washed
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
2/3 cup water
2 tsp juniper berries, lightly crushed
1/2 tsp whole black peppercorns, lightly crushed
1/2 tsp salt
sliced shallots, optional

prepared canning jars
2-4 bay leaves
2-4 small umbels wild fennel flowers or seeds (or 1 tsp fennel seeds added to brine while heating)

Divide fennel umbels and bay leaves between jars.
Follow the directions for preparing pickled huckleberries from previous recipe but strain out spices from hot pickling brine before adding to huckleberries.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Fat of the Land At PSMS

Langdon Cook of the local blog Fat of The Land will be presenting his new book , Fat of the Land: Adventures of a 21st Century Forager, at Puget Sound Mycological Society (PSMS) this Tuesday the 8th of September. Langdon's talk will surely be fun and informative and this is also a great reason to check out the local mushroom club.

PSMS is a rich community of mushroom enthusiasts from weekend foragers to acclaimed mycologists. They have monthly meetings with interesting and varied presenters, a great snail-mail newsletter, workshops, and organized mushroom hunting forays. Their Annual Mushroom Show in mid-October is a legendary event celebrating everything fungi - cooking demos, mushroom specimen exhibits, and expert identifiers to name a few things. Actually at every meeting there are mushroom identifiers, so bring your backyard fungi and find out what it actually is.

It is free to check out a meeting, and membership is only $25 for a one person or a family. Starting this Tuesday they will be selling my calendar as a fundraiser for only $12 ($1 off the sugg. retail price) along side their choice selection of nature and guide books for sale.

Puget Sound Mycological Society September Meeting
Tuesday, September 8, 2009, 7:30pm
Center for Urban Horticulture

3501 NE 41st St
Seattle, WA 98105

Friday, September 4, 2009

This Week at Foraged and Found Edibles 8/4

Chanterelles are in fulll swing. Lobster mushrooms are steady too. Huckleberries are in there last weeks so enjoy them while they are here.

We will also have white chanterelles. White chanterelles are meatier and firmer than their golden cousins. White chanterelles grow under the top layer duff, poking their heads up just enough to be able to find them hiding under the needles and rich humus.

There is a small possibility we will have King Boletes at the markets on Sunday. If not we will have them next week hopefully.

Have a great holiday weekend!

We will be at the Queen Anne Farmer's Market until the end of the month.