It has been a great season for the mushroom pickers whos cars over the past few weeks have lined the road leading to our house. The rainy days followed by sunshine has made the conditions perfect for the mushrooms to thrive in ...and what a variety there are.
The Porcini season September /October in these parts has finished and instead a different variety can be seen collected. I had to stop a few mushrooms pickers with baskets laden with funghi on a few occasions just to see what type were safe to pick and so last weekend we trooped into the woods to collect our own. The kind everyone was picking had a pink tinge to them and I was excited to get them home to start cooking.
Unfortunately I was very disappointed that they didnt have much taste at all. I tried roasting them in the oven with fresh thyme and olive oil, and again in a risotto, but I couldnt draw any mushroom flavour out of them unlike Porcini. So my desire to collect mushrooms has now diminshed and will now wait until the Porcini season next year.
Little did I know until lately that you need a licence to go mushroom picking, not expensive, but necessary. I suppose due to the fact that there are so many poisonous varieties out there it makes sense to know which are safe to pick.