Saturday, 26 March 2016

Forest Mushrooms, Humble Yet Slightly Elusive In Nature.

A walk to the office...

Yesterday, I literally walked to work but work of a different sort. A morning appointment to accompany a slightly older lady on an hours walk. Before you scoff and snort about such being anything but work, turn your mind inwards towards those good intentions to walk and where they are gathering dust...

We all need some encouragement and if you knew that I was waiting outside your door to take you for a walk, excuses would be null and void...somehow, strangely enough my powers of persuasions seem to have no impact at all closer to home because Bob tends to put on his earphones to tune out my nagging.

The only way to get him walking is to mention that I encountered a handsome ( and rather fictitious ) young man on my walk...
eh voila, just like that his aching toe, hamstring or pinkie are forgotten!

Anyway, this delightful lady and I were careering around the neighbourhood and decided to take a turn in the forest. As I am not too fond of forest meanderings on my own or with someone who is a forest novice, I made sure that she knew how to get out of the forest sans breadcrumbs.

Gosh, I needn't have worried as she told me that firstly she loves mushroom hunting and secondly that she has walked in and through the local forests all her life. Great stuff. For a while we picked our way over slightly rain-soaked terrain and she pointed out the much desired mushroom hot spots. The season is still a month or so away, but she mentioned that unless you get there at the crack of dawn none are left over.

My parents go mushroom hunting each season although the last one was bereft of fungi as the rains were a bit scarce.( Fantastic for the vines though as they adore the heat and dryness. The local 2015 vintage will be out of this world! ) Honestly, I do have a healthy respect for these handpicked forest mushrooms. My mum has a mushroom bible at home which even puts the skull & crossbones next to the relevant pictures, but she hardly uses it anymore!!!

When she cooks the divine smelling mushrooms for all of us, I tend to abstain because someone has to drive to the hospital after all...but perhaps this season I'll take the plunge into the culinary adventures of handpicked forest mushrooms. My favourite way to prepare them is as a sort of cream laden, topped with parsley stew alongside a homemade Knödel...

Ah, is there anything better than being with family, eating simple yet mouthwatering food while drinking a beverage that is fit for the Gods and which the Romans have already enjoyed ?

Biggi