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Mushroom Foraging Tips – May 2023
As autumn winds down and winter makes its presence felt in the Western Cape, there comes a change in the mushrooms that are found and foraged.
Porcini (Boletus edulis) can still be found but not likely in any large quantities.
Other boletes such as Poplar Boletes (Leccinum durisculum), Bay Boletes (Imleria badia), various Suillus species (e.g. S. granulatus, S. bovinus, S. luteus), and Red-Cracking Bolete (Xerocomellus chrysenteron) all start to emerge with the drop in temperatures. Although not considered to be prize edible mushrooms, they are all very tasty and bring a wonderful variety of flavours and textures into the kitchen.
With heavy rains, plenty of Pine Rings, aka Saffron Milk Caps (Lactarius deliciosus) emerge in the pine plantations. They make for delicious eating and are also fantastic pickled.
Other edible mushrooms that emerge during this time include Blushers (Amanita rubescens), White Parasols (Macrolepiota zeyheri), and Shaggy Ink Caps (Coprinus comatus).
It’s a wonderful time of the year with plenty of opportunities to improve your knowledge of the identification and edibility of various species. Do be careful though, as it is also the time of year that many Death Caps (Amanita phalloides) emerge. Make extra sure you are confident about your identification before consuming your foraged mushrooms. We have included some Death Cap pics below, but be sure to thoroughly research how to identify them.
We invite you to browse our recipes for some cooking ideas.
There are old mushroom foragers
And there are bold mushroom foragers
But there are no old, bold mushroom foragers
Be sure to research how to identify poisonous mushrooms. Here are some pics to help get you started.
photo cred: scielo.org.za
photo cred: forestwildlife.org