You know the old saying, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”? Morel mushrooms are one of nature’s ways of making up for last year’s forest fires! Yes, we endured weeks of barely breathable air thanks to nearby fires last August and September, but now, we can enjoy morel mushrooms, which only grow in recent burn areas.
The other day Jim and I and the 6yo grandgirl headed up to a nearby burn area. Here in south-eastern British Columbia, most fires seem to sweep up mountainsides, so the terrain was quite steep and unstable. Also, no hope of staying remotely clean! I let the girl stay in that outfit after discovering a few holes and runs in the knit fabric. It had obviously been well used and no longer a “good” dress.
I showed the girl a photo of morels on my phone on our way to the burn site, and then she proceeded to find the very first mushroom. Also, she found over half of the total haul.
You can see how steep it was! I found it difficult to navigate both because of poor eyesight and not being in super shape yet since the heart attack 18 months ago. I managed, though! And I even found two of the mushrooms myself. I pointed and said, “there’s one!” And the grandgirl said, “oh, and another and three, four, no five!” So she was definitely the winner LOL.
We weighed our haul when we got home. About 40 minutes of picking netted the three of us (or, rather, the two of them…) 14.3 ounces. Since morels are worth about $38/pound, we enjoyed every last one of them. The first handful went into a sausage salad for lunch, and the remainder was sauteed up with onions as accompaniment for steak dinner. We savored every morsel and, if time allows, we’ll head back up the mountain and look for more soon!