Stepping into nature, you’re surrounded by edible wild foods—if you know where to look. Old traditions of foraging have seen a passionate resurgence of interest among midwestern chefs and home cooks intrigued by the vitality of foods growing just footsteps—or a healthy hike—from their doors. But many hesitate over collecting wild mushrooms: How do you know which ones are okay to eat? And once you do, how should you prepare them? Join a certified wild mushroom identification expert and a veteran cook and mycophile for an intelligent hunt for delicious fungi in the local woods. We’ll begin with how to get started and the kinds of natural habitats friendly to fruitings of edible mushrooms, then head out for a full day of exploration, hopefully discovering a basketful of late summer or early autumn species, like lobster, chanterelle, or king boletes. The next morning we’ll gather in the school’s kitchen classroom for a cooking workshop and communal lunch. Be prepared for a healthy hike of more than a mile over uneven ground on Day 1. Michael and Lisa are the co-authors (along with photographer Dennis Becker) of Untamed Mushrooms: From Field to Table. A hybrid guidebook/cookbook, it invites readers to get off the couch and into the woods to start their own mushroom-stalking adventures. You can become an expert too, learning a baker’s dozen of easily identifiable edible and delicious wild mushrooms. Students age 12+ may register for this course.
• Comfortable, sturdy hiking shoes
• Insect repellent
• Lightweight backpack, water bottle, snacks/bag lunch (for Saturday, when we’re in the field)
• Apron (for cooking on Sunday)