The recent hosepipe bans may be a cause for concern among gardeners, but they could signal a bumper season for fungi fanatics . . .
Morels and St George’s are beginning to appear in numbers across the country – the mushroom season has truly begun! . . .
Wow! What a year for stinkhorns! This aptly-named mushroom (Phallus impudicus) can be both stunningly smelly and positively pornographic in appearance.
The subject of fungal toxicity is a source of constant fascination for many people, yet it is one which is very improperly understood – particularly by the mycophobic British. While there are certainly plenty of mushrooms which are poisonous enough to kill an adult, in practice the list of dangerous mushrooms is much shorter than one might imagine . . .
The delicate, lightly-scented, flavour of chanterelles works particularly well with dairy products. This recipe harnesses the summer glut of eggs on our smallholding and feta’s tangy acidity to produce a wonderfully light and refreshing quiche which is perfect on a lazy summer picnic.
Chanterelles normally begin to emerge in the second half of July and this French dish, based loosely on a Jane Grigson recipe, harnesses their unique, scented, qualities .
St George’s mushrooms work particularly well with white meats. Personally I prefer to use a fresh wild rabbit rather than chicken, harnessing two of the best wild foods to be found in spring, but most people probably find chicken more acceptable and certainly easier to come by.
This delicious drink is simplicity itself to make and tastes all the better when drunk in the sunshine, mixed with fizzy water, ice cubes, a slice of lemon and a sprig of mint.
Generally these wonderful mushrooms are one of those rare ingredients that are actually better dried than fresh. Raw, they are fairly mild, but when dried the flavour intensifies and becomes almost nutty. Every now and then, however, one comes across a clump of absolutely perfect mushrooms that just scream out to be eaten fresh. On such occasions cooking the caps simply this simple recipe is hard to beat (obviously dry rather than discard the stalks):
These crunchy, fluffy, packages are a sort of cross between a samosa and a pastie. It combines butter-brushed filo pastry, cream cheese and delicate fungi.