I just discovered your videos and I’m loving them. Your morel hunting
reminds me of mushroom hunting in the cottonwoods at Manhattan Kans back
in the 70′s. At 1:34 Where you say “Lots of other mushrooms about”.
Even in the video I recognized my absolute favorite mushroom, coprinus,
(most likely micacious) Spelling might not be right. Most people call
these toadstools because they are so common and turn into slime. The
one you videoed is commonly called inky caps and they are awesome. Not
very big but they often are found in great numbers. I think the ones
show were past their prime which happens quickly. Once you learn to
identify these or more easily grown your own you will have a steady
source of mushroom soup. These have to be taken home and cooked
immediately or they will digest themselves into slime. The pioneers
used to use them as an ink substitute for writing. If you consume very
much alcohol on a regular basis you will not be interested in them.
They contain antibuse and I always check that no one has consumed
alcohol or will do so 24 hours before or after they eat them. Since we
drink very little it’s not a problem for us. Since you seem to be
working with dumped chips, you have undoubtedly run into plenty of these
mushrooms. they grow on or around rotted wood. You have to get them
early in the morning or after a rain or watering. This variety is small
and they may be only a half inch to 2 inches but they pack amazing
flavor. The underside of the gills needs to be white but I sometimes
eat a few silvers also. The variety shown sometimes has a light powdery
dusting on it. You can work with as little as a half cup of inky
cups. They are extremely delicate but pack a lot of flavor. Take them
home and rinse them with some water and put them in a skillet with
butter and one or more of the following. Green onions, chives, or wild
onions and garlic. They will immediately turn into a fragrant rue-like
soup base. Add milk and you are done. We have also added baby lambs
quarter greens weeded out of the flower bed. A soup made for the gods.
There are several varieties of inky caps but this one loves wood
chips. Best thing about them. They are not limited to a season.
Anytime the conditions are right you can find them and if the conditions
aren’t right you can make them so. I have been eating these for
years. LOL The lady next door used to watch me do this for months.
Finally she got brave enough to try a cup of soup and was hooked. She
would help me pick the mushrooms from the chip pile or bring me ones she
found in her yard. One morning I went outside to find her in my yard
with a watering can, sprinkling the chip pile. She looked up and said,
“I’m in the mood for mushroom soup”. Couldn’t tell for sure some of
your other finds. Some looked like possible shelf or oyster types. We
eat morels, inky caps, puffballs, jelly ears, hedgehog and oyster. Your
kids look so blessed and HAPPY. Thanks for warning them to not touch
all the mushrooms. It’s a fine line to teach people, especially
children, what to harvest.
Guess I’m in the writing mood today. A year or so ago I was in Mildred Keeney Park in Claycomo. We have large areas that are covered with an escaped garden bulb commonly called, Star of Bethlehem. They grow rampantly in clumps and have a lovely white bloom. They strongly resemble green onions, both the leaves, they way they grow and the rooted bulbs but they have NO onion odor. They are also extremely poisonous if eaten. So I was somewhat surprise to find a family walking through the woods with great handfuls of them. Not just the flowers but the entire plant. I commented, “looks like you are going to have them growing in your yard next year.” The mother said, “Oh no, we are going to make soup out of them, they are such nice big wild onions.” I told her, “They may appear to be onions but smell them and you will see that they are not. These plants are beautiful to look at but deadly to eat.” She smelled them and said, “They’re just not very strong because they are’nt quite RIPE”. She then went off and picked some more. I then went to my car and found some paper and a pen and wrote her a note. I took it back to her. She asked what it was. I said “Please do me a favor and keep this. These plants grow in my yard. Since you seem determined to ignore me I have written down the number for the Poison control center and the name of the plant so you can tell them what you have eaten. Please don’t let your little ones eat very much because it doesn’t take very much to do them harm from it’s toxic effects. I am sorry I don’t know the Latin name but I am sure they will know the plant because this is a common mistake.” I then got in the car and left.
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