Wednesday, May 6, 2015

In the underbrush

Creeping.  Hands and knees on spongy moss, deep in the needle litter where the field meets the trees.  Next to a pile of old moose pellets they are sprouting.  Small.  Fresh.  New, but with battered tips from pushing up through the duff.

Not much relieves tension as reliably as a day alone in the underbrush.  Foraging.  Leaned against a trunk by a little stream.  Thoughts fueled by green tea of the season, lively and quick.

Morels are early this year and somewhat scarce.  We need rain badly.  Last year, I harvested this spot when the elderberries were blooming.  Now they are barely leafed-out.  

This monster falsie is an ideal exhibit of some of the differences between true and false morels.  The comparison is really very slight.  

I was lucky to find enough for a meal and then I climbed out of the moist bottom up a dry gulch through sticks and brush.  Hopping downed logs.  Sweating.  I gained a ridge top and looped around to meet my car.  I lost track of time, which is not something that happens often these days.

The spoils

I dry-fried them, added a little butter and a little wine.  A meager clove of garlic and a touch of chopped parsley.  Put them on little toasts and broiled them with a pinch of parmigiano.  They were perfect.

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