Actually I’m usually not that careful. I should be, but I don’t sell them so I tend to just do bags. If I know I’m going out for volume I take a wicker basket and paper bags or wax paper to separate. If I have to do a lot of vertical climbs, drop offs, valley walls etc. I use my computer back pack with cardboard boxes put in it to keep from squishing things and wax paper. Most of the time I use paper bags and one of those fiber mesh bags used with oranges to hold them. I strap it to my belt or put it over my shoulder. I usually take just a pound or two of mushrooms on a walk, just enough for snacks or pasta or to stock the medicine shelf and that fits. I think most people go for baskets, but I don’t stay on trails and usually need the extra hand.
Today’s walk was mostly for Chanterelles but I found a huge Caesar’s mushroom, and the other two a Birch sickener and Bitter bolete are not for the table but looked cool. Note: Amanita caesarea has some very poisonous look a likes and is very much not a beginners mushroom.
Chanterelles are coming up. I found a bunch, but they were small. I am going to come back in a day or two and see were they are at. This usually doesn’t work for me because of bugs, but they were really too small. I did end up taking about a pound just in case. I noticed a bunch of fly agaric right beside the chanterelles. It’s a good reminder of the care you need to take when hunting mushrooms. They really don’t look that much alike, but accidentally grab one of them with your chanterelles and your in for rough time. To make it worse I have been told the yellow have a higher level of toxin then the red.
Sure, I changed it anyway. This recipe assumes you know how to make basic wild wines as far as procedures and equipment etc.
For a gallon (just double or triple if you want more. No need to add more Yeast or another Campden tablet)
7 cups petals no greens
1/2pt white grape concentrate
2 lbs sugar (or one of sugar one of honey)
3 tsp acid blend
¼ tsp tannin
½ tsp energizer
1 Campden tablet crushed
1 packet champagne yeast
Wash pedals in cold water drain. Add all ingredients except the yeast to a gal of hot water. Mix and let stand 24 hours. Add yeast and in 7 days rack removing the petals. Let go another 2 months (4 months if you use honey) bottle up.
Depends on the plant. Breads, quick breads and soups really get a lot out of dried plants and herbs. You can add them to bread after the first rise. Dried ramp leaves and garlic with dried tomatoes is one of my favorites. I also make rubs for beef poultry and fish. We infuse oils too, for dipping frying and glazing. Tea is definitely a big one though. With the 3 kids and my wife we drink a lot as tea. I love nettle tea with lemon, and fresh camomile tea, and elderflower and I could go on for a while… Dried fruit is a great thing to do with not so great apples and pears. Some of my apple trees produce apples that are not very good out of hand, (too tart) but dried the kids eat them faster then I can produce them. Though with the big dehydrator I might have a chance. Dried apples are also good as a substitute for fresh in fried apples and onions. I also dry mushrooms for preserving, most rehydrate well. If you want to start for free you can oven dry fruit usually 125 to 200 Deg, or just hang herbs to dry depending on your climate. A cheep dehydrator would be about 30$ U.S. and is well worth it if it gets use.