Any Mushroom Pickers?

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joerogo
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2008/10/07 21:36:33 (permalink)

Any Mushroom Pickers?

The wild mushrooms are sprouting. Any other mushroom pickers out there? What are your favorites?

Here is a shot of some mushrooms picked by my house. The Polish immigrants name them "Pa-Pinkies" They grow on dead red oak stumps and root systems.

[img][/img]
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    DougS
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/07 21:51:22 (permalink)
    I love mushrooms but not familiar enough to pick wild mushrooms other than Shaggy Manes or Puff Balls. I once got into a patch of Shaggy manes in a bushy area and picked a couple of 6 quart baskets full.They do not keep for any length of time.

    Those Pinkies look like what are called Pine Mushrooms. Very hard to find and expensive to buy. Orientals love them.

    Spring is the time for a favorite...Morrels. Another hard to find but delicious.
    #2
    felix4067
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/07 23:53:18 (permalink)
    I had no idea there were edible mushrooms in the fall. We always get ours in the spring (morels, white morels, cappers, etc.). Puff balls, definitely, but then we get them all summer.
    #3
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 06:41:57 (permalink)
    In my area fall is the best time for mushrooms. Besides Pa-pinkies, I pick Sheeps Head and Chicken Mushrooms.

    The Sheeps Head mushroom basically looks like a sheeps head. They grow at the base of very old red oak trees. Usual size is about 15-20 pounds.

    The Chicken Mushroom is florescent orange on top and florescent yellow on the bottom. They grow in layers on dead red oak stumps. They smell like chicken soup when you boil them, hence the name.

    I will post pics if I get lucky enough to find more. Competition is fierce right now. I was in Florida when my Pa-pinkies sprouted and someone raided my patch.

    If picked correctly the pa-pinkies and and sheeps head mushrooms will come back every year in the same spot. Because they are not grown in pristine conditions, they must be boiled.

    [img]

    Then I package them and freeze the for year long use.

    [img][/img][/img]
    #4
    kland01s
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 08:38:40 (permalink)
    I love puffballs but haven't seen any in years.
    #5
    Michael Hoffman
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 11:52:10 (permalink)
    I don't eat them, but I used to hunt, pick and fix morels for the family.
    #6
    firecommander3565
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 11:54:02 (permalink)
    Found lot's of Morel this spring / summer in western Illinois ( 100 West of Chicag) near Oregon Illinios in a State park. More then we ever found before. We had a grocery bag full one time. Boy they were good eating!
    #7
    lleechef
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 12:06:33 (permalink)
    Morels!! Tons of them in Michigan (May is Morel Month in Michigan). We also have them in Alaska. I have picked chantrelles, cepes, lobster mushrooms and hen-of-the-woods. Morels and chantrelles are my favorites.
    #8
    leethebard
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 12:12:14 (permalink)
    Love mushrooms but am not versed enough in what to pick...and since I value my health,I let those experts i know do the picking...had a friend whose father picked a variety and fried them up with some butter and garlic(sometimes a red sauce) and they were delicious...and I survived,so I guess he knew what he was doing!
    #9
    brittneal
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/08 13:26:10 (permalink)
    When i was still living in Denevr we would hunt mushrooms in the spring and fall. The fall varieties are a little less tho. Sept was great for monster puff balls. We would find them as big as your head. Floured and fried like a steak they were awesome.
    Befor i got sick we picked fresh morrells every year. I remember coming home with 5lbs or more at a time. At the prices they charge in gourmet shops, I cant afford to buy them!
    Its definitely worth the effort to learn how to pick them. You can find some real treasures.
    britt
    #10
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/09 18:04:22 (permalink)
    Great day in the woods today. One of the best prizes in the woods is when you find an old dead stump. The mushrooms you find around it are called "Stumpy's". Not only for where you found them but also because they are short, fat and meaty.

    These are actually a little young to pick. I am throwing some leaves over them to hide them, and I will be back on Saturday to pick them. Unless of course someone else finds them first.

    [img]

    Tonight I am enjoying the spoils of the woods. Polenta, with a sauce made from mushrooms, sausage and San Marzano tomatoes. And of course, a good bottle of vino.

    [img]

    Gourmet food, free from Mother Nature![/img][/img][/img]
    #11
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/09 18:13:34 (permalink)
    I wish I knew mushrooms species enough with confidence to pick. I do not and I am afraid.

    I still buy from grocery store but muy choices are limited. There is a new mushroom store on Central in Knoxville that specilizes in mushrooms but I have not been there.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #12
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/10 18:52:58 (permalink)
    Sheeps/Rams Head mushrooms are fairly easy to identify. They grow at the base of old, old, live red oak trees. And they sort of look like a sheeps head. I don't know if they are a regional item so good luck in Tn. Sundancer.

    A friend of mine called me today because he found a tree with seven sheeps heads around it. They were about 7-10 pounds each.

    He gave me this beauty, but wouldn't tell me where the tree was. I guess we are not that good of friends.

    [img]

    Rookiecook, Post the photos and we'll take a look at them. Also describe where you found them. Live tree, dead tree, oak, etc.

    I am nowhere near an expert on the subject. I just know what I was taught from some very smart "Old Timers" [/img]
    #13
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/14 20:26:39 (permalink)
    I know I'm boring the heck out of everyone with this thread.(Based on Response). But I really love pickin mushrooms. It's my favorite sport.

    I started a job in Malvern, PA. today. The property was beautiful, loads of 100 plus year old trees. The first thing I did was walk the property looking for mushrooms. It paid off, I found an oak tree with five sheep's head mushrooms.

    Here is a shot of one side of the massive tree.

    [img]

    I will pick these two beauty's tomorrow before I head home. The other three will be harvested by foreman who is also a mushroom picker/lover.[/img]

    #14
    Davydd
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/14 20:51:47 (permalink)
    We usually have two or three puffball mushrooms in our front woods. This year just before we left on our trip I harvested this one and it yielded about 1-1/2 pounds and enough for a good size pot of mushroom soup.

    #15
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 16:40:32 (permalink)
    Davydd, I am not well versed on puffballs. I believe I have seen them in the woods, though much smaller than the one pictured.

    Do you know what their growing conditions are and how to make a positive ID?
    #16
    Davydd
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 17:34:55 (permalink)
    They are just a ball and there are no gills and such The meat is consistent throughout the whole ball. The one I showed is a comparatively small puffball. Some of mine get bigger than a basketball. In Minnesota they start to show up about mid September in a deciduous tree heavily wooded lot.

    Here are some from past years...

    2006


    2007




    Mushroom Soup
    #17
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 17:56:35 (permalink)
    Are puffballs edible? Mushrooms sorta scare me.



    Thanks

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #18
    Davydd
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 18:33:48 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Sundancer7

    Are puffballs edible? Mushrooms sorta scare me.



    Thanks

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN

    I just make the soup to look at it. OK, OK, jokes aside, the beer is the antidote.
    #19
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 18:37:30 (permalink)
    Wow Davydd, I take it back. I never saw anything like this. Great shots.

    Paul, you don't know what you are missing. Wild mushrooms are way more flavorful than cultivated varieties. As a comparison, porcini mushrooms cannot be cultivated. They are all harvested in the wild, which explains the great, distinctive flavor.

    Tonights side dish. Sheeps/Rams Head mushroom, with a light flour batter. Heaven!

    [img]

    Oh, and a nice bottle of vino.[/img]
    #20
    MetroplexJim
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 19:16:45 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Sundancer7

    I wish I knew mushrooms species enough with confidence to pick. I do not and I am afraid.

    I still buy from grocery store but muy choices are limited. There is a new mushroom store on Central in Knoxville that specilizes in mushrooms but I have not been there.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN


    You are a wise man who knows that discretion is the better part of valor.

    I really enjoyed the wild mushrooms my grandfather picked for "ma grandmere" (first generation French) to prepare in wonderful Gallic ways. He knew what he was doing; I don't.

    In fact, when the marriage with my starter wife was going sour she (a botanist) threatened to put "amanitas (Amanita Verna) in my soup". I mentioned this over drinks with a professor-colleague and her pathologist husband and his face paled as he advised me to "get out NOW". Turns out that such a poisoning would (then, ca. 1975) have been an almost perfect murder as the "evidence" is excreted several weeks before the excruciating death. I took his advice and got the house and the kids (for "other stuff", not the threat).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Poisonous_mushrooms
    #21
    DougS
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 19:24:35 (permalink)
    If mushrooms are left to turn to spores, does that mean a bigger harvest the next year?

    I have come across huge puffballs, that when kicked send out a puff of brown smoke. I assume, that is the spores.
    #22
    joerogo
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/15 19:35:15 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by DougS

    If mushrooms are left to turn to spores, does that mean a bigger harvest the next year?

    I have come across huge puffballs, that when kicked send out a puff of brown smoke. I assume, that is the spores.


    Dougs, Be careful buddy. They are what we call "smokers". And if you and the spores have a bad reaction, you could end up on steriods for the rest of your life. No kidding.

    If you see a smoker in your yard, DO NOT run it over with the mower. Take a minute and spray it with the hose from afar.
    #23
    Wabbit
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/16 19:41:17 (permalink)
    I am in the same boat, I really love Mushrooms, but I do not have the knowledge to pick the right ones. I also dont want my last words to be I know what a poison mushroom looks like Ughhhhhh then fall on floor
    quote:
    Originally posted by leethebard

    Love mushrooms but am not versed enough in what to pick...and since I value my health,I let those experts i know do the picking...had a friend whose father picked a variety and fried them up with some butter and garlic(sometimes a red sauce) and they were delicious...and I survived,so I guess he knew what he was doing!
    #24
    DougS
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/30 20:52:07 (permalink)
    joerogo- Thanks for that advice about the spores. I never knew and have kicked a few.
    I never made it out puffball hunting this year, seems the time just flew by, and now we are into frosty nights.
    #25
    drummagick
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2008/10/31 21:20:08 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by joerogo

    quote:
    Originally posted by DougS

    If mushrooms are left to turn to spores, does that mean a bigger harvest the next year?

    I have come across huge puffballs, that when kicked send out a puff of brown smoke. I assume, that is the spores.


    Dougs, Be careful buddy. They are what we call "smokers". And if you and the spores have a bad reaction, you could end up on steriods for the rest of your life. No kidding.

    If you see a smoker in your yard, DO NOT run it over with the mower. Take a minute and spray it with the hose from afar.



    As a kid, I used to kick them to watch them puff. As an adult, it only made sense that this might not be such a good idea.

    The CDC has something to say about inhaling the spores, scary!

    http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00032029.htm
    #26
    Davydd
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2009/08/16 22:10:44 (permalink)
    The puffball mushrooms came early this year. We usually get them about mid September. A recent 4 inch rainfall and cold summer may have had something to do with it. So once again I found large puffballs in our woods. One was about the size of a soccer ball, one was the size of a basketball and one was the size of a large beach ball. This is the beach ball size mushroom.



    I decided to leave that one and the smallest one in the woods. I picked the basketball size mushroom right at perfection. The skin was white and mostly unblemished and it was firm. This is the basketball size mushroom in my refrigerator. It weighed in at 4.5 pounds. For comparison in scale those beer cans are the taller 16 oz. pint size, not your normal 12 oz. size.



    I took this mushroom and skinned it with a bread knife to cut away the parts exposed to bugs and dirt. That is a lot easier than trying to clean it. The remainder was still well over 3 pounds. I sliced it in half and put half away. With about a 1-1/2 lb slice I decided to make mushroom soup so I cubed it into chunks.

    My recipe is thus:

    Cream of Mushroom Soup - 2009 Puffball

    1-1/2 lbs sliced, chopped and cubed puffball mushroom
    1-1/2 (12 tbs) sticks of salted butter
    1 cup chopped red onion
    1 cup whole wheat flour
    4 cups (32 oz) chicken broth
    1 cup half and half
    2 tbs spoons sherry
    1/4 tps nutmeg
    1/4 tps ground black pepper

    Saute mushrooms and onion in butter in a large pot. Mushrooms will fill pot but saute down to about 1/4. Then add flour and chicken broth. Bring to boil one minute and then let simmer for 20 minutes. Add half and half, sherry, nutmeg and ground pepper. Heat to serve. Served with garlic toast and Nancy's spinach/bacon salad.

    Here are the cubed mushrooms freshly put in the pot.


    In less than 15 minutes they saute down to this.


    After all the ingredients are added this is the final soup.


    And now ready to serve with garlic toast and my wife's fresh made spinach/bacon salad. Optionally garlic croutons could be added to the soup.



    I usually make mushroom soup every year with our puffballs. The flavor is subtle, rich and totally unlike any mushroom soup you can make with most mushrooms available in a supermarket. Having just seen the move Julie & Julia I upped the amount of butter in the recipe a half stick. You can't go wrong with butter.
    #27
    NYPIzzaNut
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2009/08/16 22:21:32 (permalink)
    Wabbit

    I am in the same boat, I really love Mushrooms, but I do not have the knowledge to pick the right ones. I also dont want my last words to be I know what a poison mushroom looks like Ughhhhhh then fall on floor
    [id="quote"]quote: [id="quote"]Originally posted by leethebard

    Love mushrooms but am not versed enough in what to pick...and since I value my health,I let those experts i know do the picking...had a friend whose father picked a variety and fried them up with some butter and garlic(sometimes a red sauce) and they were delicious...and I survived,so I guess he knew what he was doing!

    [id="quote"]

    We live in a densely wooded area and our next door neighbor is an expert on picking mushrooms and showers us with them - especially during this past rainy season -  I love to make mushroom salad with them (sautee mushrooms and garlic and cool and add mayo)  and add them to omelets and stews and burgers etc.

    #28
    mar52
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2009/08/17 00:00:05 (permalink)
    Incredible!  I love all of the pictures.  Doesn't matter though because there's no way in well I'd never pick any to eat.

    I won't even touch them.

    I just know that it would be an awful, painful death.

    I'm in awe of those that do and jealous of all of those varieties.

    Thank you for this thread!
    #29
    agnesrob
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    RE: Any Mushroom Pickers? 2009/08/17 08:38:49 (permalink)
    I can't believe I missed this thread the first time around. I loved the pictures and info. Thanks for posting and resurrecting it!
    #30
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