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Morel Mushrooms

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Like Weed Shark, I would love to make the morel mushrooms my family's Official Mushroom! Stfcatfish told us a wonderful recipe for lake trout a couple weeks ago that used morels and I really would love to pick them fresh. Just short of anyone giving me their fungus hole (sorta like a honey hole? ;\) ), can anyone tell me if there are an abundance in the Duluth/North Shore area? Or am I wasting my time here? Where should I go and what should I look for?

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My only reply is ---- mushrooms should not be a food, - slimmy, smelling, fungus this. sick.gifgrin.gifcrazy.gif I'm only half joking. \:o

So you won't get any info from me Lisa - grin.gif

I'd banish them from every kitchen if I could. blush.gif

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Reelemin and Sandmannd, you two are missing out! Morels, and other shrooms can be great! A friend who I was finally able to convince to try them last year stated, "They're like,(takes another bite,) they're like little fillet mignot(sp?)!"

Lisa, if you have any elms up that way look around the base of dead elms. I am not familiar with picking morels up nort, but I have read from many people to look for 12" diameter poppels. Think telephone pole size. Up nort you will also be looking for the black morel, unlike most of MN which has gray morels, blonde morels, and some black morels. The season is usually two weeks long in May. When it's time to start picking their are not bugs out yet, and the weeds are short. By the end of the Morel season the bugs are out and the weeds are tall. Ticks are ever present, so take care to fend off these blood suckers!

If you do a search on google, keep it simple, the MN section of morelsdot....has some info on hunting morels up nort.

Good Luck! Hopefully you'll have some morel pics to post this spring!

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One of the biggest morel hunters I've talked to is Harvey Lee. He's got a pretty good grasp on where and when to look.

I've never tried looking for them but I should probably start. I do like mushrooms a lot.

I know everyone is entitled to their opinion about what foods they like, but I don't understand the judgment about mushrooms.

"I'd banish them from every kitchen if I could"

Most mushrooms are dry and smooth. I think they taste fine plain and fantastic cooked up.

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I admit I'm bias. \:\) I've only tried a few and none of the so called "good ones" - I am open to trying a morel - maybe , we'll see, possibly, confused.gif

Its the thought and the visual look of most of them I have a hard time with crazy.gif

The hunt for them does sound fun though grin.gif

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OMG. Only about 3 weeks for me down here to start the hunt for the delicious little treats.

I am not sure about around Duluth but down here garbage sacks full are not uncommon. \:\)

I would bet you could find some. You need to find hardwoods like elms and maple trees.

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I always wondered how far north they could be found, too. I remember a post last year asking that question, they were near the Canadian border. A reply said they could be found that far north. These forums are great for info like that, aren't they? I’d like to hear more about their range.

During college, I picked a few in Mankato. The last few years, our family has gotten more into the morel thing; we're usually within an hour of the cities.

The time is "while the lilacs are blooming," usually May around here, best after some heavy rains. Look in deciduous forests, not coniferous; a hint of moss is a good thing.

Mushroom hunting is dangerous. However, Morels are popular because they are easy to identify. The cap looks pitted, kind of like a sponge. The cap's base is directly attached to the stem, not umbrella-like. Slice them lengthwise: "If it's not hollow, don't swallow." Cotton-like or fibrous material inside is a bad thing.

Compare the differences, which are mentioned above, between Half-Free Morels, and the more dangerous Verpas, and False Morels. The Half-Free Morels I've seen, have more stem, and are less substantial to eat.

Study up, and you'll get comfortable with identification. Read, talk to knowledgeable people, try a "mushroom expert" or "morel mushroom" search. Maybe, buy some at the store. But if your not sure, don't eat it.

TooMuchFun's picture above is great, in fact I think it's driving me crazy! mmmmm...MMMMMorels!

Morel huting is a mania, and good family fun. Good luck, Lisa!

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 Originally Posted By: jnelson
They're the best dang thing. If spring didn't have turkey hunting in it, I'd be hunting more of these without doubt.

That says A LOT!! \:o

I can think of plenty of things that are ugly and delicious.....most of them are seafood. Eelpout qualifies.

I would eat mushrooms raw except they taste so much better cooked in butter or some other recipe. Sounds like every vegetable I can think of.

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The only difference is that you find them and pick them yourself. Kinda like picking apples or berries instead of buying at the store.

I personally haven't had morels so I can't compare their taste, but there are many types of edible mushrooms that you can get at the grocery store and they each have their own flavor and texture. Some are bigger than others and many are very nutritious. I did a quick google search and there is way too much info out there about commercially available mushrooms and why they are good.

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Last spring I had an amazing harvest of Morels. We ate them several times a week, gave them away and dried some for future use. I called a friend that I work with and told him that since he was married to a girl from Japan, she might like a bag full. He told me that he was heading out of town and didn't have the time. He called back five minutes later and told me that he had mentioned it to his wife and she told him that he did have the time. So he brought her over to pick up a gallon of them. She can be very forceful when wild mushrooms are involved.

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Morel mushrooms are the best food on earth. Sauted in butter on steaks to just a whole meal of just morels.

Tami, if you lived a little closer, I would have my wife cook you up a meal and then next season you might be out hunting morels.

I will start to look for these tasty morsels in approx 3 weeks or so depending on temps and rain. Usually the little greys are out approx 1 week or so before the Lilacs are starting to bloom. Then, the big yeloows start. One can watch whats happenning in Iowa and figure a week to a week and a half and they will be going around the mankato area.

Nothing better than finding 3-4 grocery bags full in a day, better than anything money can buy.

My main areas that I hunt morels are in areas that are off the beaten path and my best spots are on a south facing slope. Seems the ground temps warm faster there. Now, I look for dying elm trees with some of the bark falling off and some still on the tree. If you are lucky enough to find prickly ash next to this area, then you will usually find the jackpot.

Many times I will walk a hillside and just look around very slowly and even take a stick and stand in one spot and just move the weeds to see then. If you see one, dont move your feet and just keep checking that area very well and you should find more. If you find a good spot, do yourself a favor and dont tell anyone or the next time you go, you will have a empty morel patch. Mums the word is the best.

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Depending on availablity I pay $12-$30 per pound during the spring for these bad boys in the restaurants from our purveyors. One thing should be noted that if you are selling mushrooms to a food establishment that will resell them you do need a license.

This is from 2006:

“The Minnesota Department of Health has been

informed that certain food establishments are

buying wild mushrooms from anyone who shows up

at their doorstep, including individuals whose

products have not been identified by an approved

wild mushroom identification expert. This type of

purchase is not only a violation of the Minnesota

Food Code (section 4626.0155), it can also have

deadly consequences for the dining public.“

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I had fried mushrooms years ago. I cannot remember what kind of mushrooms it was. but I know it was DELICIOUS! I'm thinking it was like the ones pictured up above sliced in thin slices and fried in hot butter....I live in Nebraska myself and I sure as [PoorWordUsage] do not know where I could get these and try making myself!

Ohh my mouth waters at the thought of eating these again!

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So what's the best way to dry these things when you do hit the motherload? Also do you do a slight rinse or just brush off the sand or dirt grit that comes with finding them?

One spring I was turkey hunting at the Iowa/Missouri border and I got into them, my turkey hunting vest pockets were filled with them not turkeys. Unforunately, we soaked them to long in water and they got ruined.

They are wonderful with a steak, the best way I could describe them would be a woodsy taste. I think they would be delish with pheasant or grouse too!

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When we dried them last spring, we washed and rinsed them well, then we split them lengthwise and washed and rinsed again. They are evil geniuses as hiding sand and dirt. We used a dehydrater to dry them and then stored them in zip-lock bags.

I went to a garage sale once and noticed the guy's front yard was filled with Morels. When I mentioned it to him, he said he didn't eat them and he handed me a large grocery bag. I filled it completely in about five minutes. We ate well that evening.

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