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Early morning foraging

I wanted to get out to the enchanted mushroom forest this weekend but the only opportunity was going to be an early and quick trip out this morning, so I hit the road at dawn. I’m glad I did because the forest was fairly generous this morning.

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Lobster mushrooms – Hypomyces lactifluorum – have started in my area. These mushrooms really come into their own in August, but I was able to find half a dozen nice fresh ones this morning.

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As well, there were plenty of chanterelles around, so in less than two hours in the woods, I found more than enough for a couple dinners.

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Here they are cleaned up and ready for cooking. The lobsters are on top and the chanterelles are the yellow ones below.

The lobsters often don’t look too appetizing in the woods They’re often dirty, and found just emerging from the duff. Sometimes they have holes in them from slugs or other bugs. The key is to look for the scarlett colour. If the colour is too deep, like a crimson, that mushroom is past its expiry. What I do is slice the lobsters into eighth inch thick slices, and cut away anything that isn’t white or red.

Both chanterelles and lobsters are choice forest mushrooms. These are going to be delicious.

If you go foraging for mushrooms, remember to only eat mushrooms you can identify with 100% certainty. Please don’t take chances. There are some very nasty mushrooms growing in Ontario.

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