Saturday, July 5, 2008

King Bolete aka Porcini

A thunderous spell of rain has Mother Earth proffering many wild porcini mushrooms, or king boletes. They are part of the Boletus edulis family, and they are popping up in the woods and in moss. Some have what is called scaber stalk,-- brown flecks along the stem. The photo on the right is of one that has a little age. Younger, firmer specimens will be better and less invaded by bugs or slugs. Ted yanks them from under pine needles as they birth out of the damp earth. In France the Italian porcini is known as cep or c├Ępe. Golden chanterelles are also springing from the ground. Both species should be around until fall, so stay keen to spot either; they will be more abundant after rain. Be sure to get professional advise before eating foraged mushrooms--and always cook them before eating. Mushrooms should not be rinsed in water unless they are particularly grimy; rather use a soft brush or damp cloth to clean. Store in a paper bag to avoid premature decay.