Monday, August 02, 2010

It's Good to (have) King

King Bolete, that is. Boletus edulis and, mostly, Boletus barrowsii.

After last week's outing, we figured to head up to the same area in northern NM and see what another few days of rain had brought up, mushroom wise. After a long hike finding not much, A spotted a pair of big king boletes growing right out of the shoulder of the dirt road. After running into some (inedible but spectacular) clitocybes (clitocybe candida),

we started finding more boletes, both the kings and the barrowsii. King boletes:

You can see why they're called that:

Probably no surprise to experienced mushroom hunters, these big guys were bug hotels. Nonetheless, we ended the day with a nice batch of porcini gathered mostly just road hunting. Spotting a big one from the road, then pulling off and searching the immediate area to find younger, more prime for eating specimens.

In fact, the day was so good that shortly thereafter we gathered up friend Matt and headed out for another day of mushrooming. Just a little time had made a big difference. Some of the big guys had really moved past their "best by" date:

However, once we got to looking, we started finding the white boletes almost immediately, scattered and in small bunches.

Mixed in were lots of slippery jacks (not picked), aspen boletes and a few Satan's boletes to keep us on our toes.

We're pretty sure this is a Satan's bolete:

Not something to eat, anyway.

Aspen boletes (Leccinum fibrillosum):

Here's Booker the Chessie wondering what the big deal is about some fungus, right next to another (and our largest to date) cauliflower mushroom, one of two that we found that day.

Here's another cauliflower mushroom that some woodland creature, I'm betting elk, got to first:

We saw evidence of big boletes being browsed similarly. Squirrels and mice just nibble:

Nice eating size, unnibbled, porcini buttons:

We gathered quite a lot, not knowing when we'll get back up or how long the kings will last, then got home and processed until midnight. The dehydrator filled up in no time, moving us to field expedient measures:

Porcini- they're what's for breakfast:


Chad Love said...

Oh man, that's impressive. I'm pretty much a one-trick (morel) pony when it comes to mushroom foraging. Don't trust myself to correctly ID anything else, figure I'd probably end up as a cautionary tale on the local news.

Like your choice of knife, BTW. Hard to beat the bang-for-buck of a Mora...

Matt said...

4 qt bags of porcini sauted in butter & frozen, 3 screens of porcini dried, and a yummy dinner of cauliflower mushroom sauted with pancetta, shallots, garlic, aleppo pepper, fresh fettucine, and parsley. That's good day's haul.

mdmnm said...

We'd be after morels, too, if we could just figure out where they live & when they fruit up here. Those Moras are handy and so inexpensive that you don't feel bad abusing them by digging in the dirt. I particularly like a couple of the stainless models with rubber handles- great tackle box knives.

Matt- we're still air drying some of those we took. Others went into the freezer and into some pasta, too. Your cauliflower mushroom pasta sounds great!

Matt Mullenix said...

Love the comparrison instrument (cold beer) used in your scientific documentation!

Trout Caviar said...

Good for you, Mike, what a haul! We have a variety of boletus-type mushrooms around here, but I've never gotten confident in my identification. Last time out for me it was a log covered in oysters, more chanterelles, black trumpets, and a few hedgehogs.

I always enjoy the foraging reports. Keep 'em coming!


mdmnm said...

Well, they make those little Coke cans now, so you can't really call a soda can a universal scale. Longnecks, however, remain constant.

Thanks. You certainly are getting a nice variety. We hope to get out again soon and check out a couple of different areas in hopes of chanterelles or trumpets.