The Outdoor Journal by Kyle Carroll
Every year about this time, the phrase, “Findin' any Mushrooms?” finds its way into most rural Missouri conversations of more than a few sentences in length. I can verify that a few of the elusive fungi have been found in DeKalb County this past week, but I am sworn to secrecy of course on who found them and where. Note, it wasn’t me. This person who shall remain nameless actually split his sack with me. Mine were promptly eaten hot out of the cast iron skillet. I will keep my eyes open for more when in the woods this week.
Branden Butler, who writes the Driftwood Outdoors blog/column makes a good point in his latest column. After talking about how much fun it is to just walk in the woods or a brushy draw looking for morels on a spring day he adds:
“All of this is ultimately because morels taste so good. The hunt is fun, but eating them is the point. You might disagree, but for those of us who like mushrooms, the rich, nutty, buttery taste of a perfectly sautéed morel is unlike anything you can buy in a store. Thankfully, as far as I know, no one has been able to successfully create a commercially grown market for morels. I hope they never do. You have to put in the work and have a little luck to claim this prize.”
I think he's right. If morels were commercialized and you could eat them all the time, they wouldn't taste the same. Having to wait a whole year, then be dependent on good luck, the weather or a generous friend, just to have that once or twice a year plate full of fried mushrooms makes the whole thing a spring ritual. And a tasty one at that.