Next Full Moon

Sunday, May 3rd Full Flower Moon

07 January 2013

a post of ribaldry and violence made from the juice of Life

Time to lay it on the line. Every day I feel stronger and stronger. I don't want to let anyone down. 110%. Etc.

Success lies in 2 little words: bike ride.

There will be no deliberation. There will be simply a homely fellow on a fat bicycle in the woods. Eyes peeled for the King Bolete (Boletus edulis), a.k.a. Cep, Steinpilz or Porcini. I only started paying attention to the local annual mushroom bonanza last winter, so I have no frame of reference to hang on this current season I'm hammering into the wall. Last year the little piglets popped out all over; the place was lousy with them. I couldn't not see a few every ride through the Monterey Pines in that 1st half of December, many right on the edge of the trail. But this winter it's been a real struggle. Before today I had only found 4 that were worth taking home. Given the right environs, it is all a matter of timing (a day late and they are spoiled) and luck.

And you rascals out ahead of me, don't think I miss your little sneaky tricks. People smash the pulpy remains of ruined old boletes into an unrecognizable mush so that location will remain a secret. Folks be knocking the Fly Amanitas (amanitas muscarias) off trailside and into the underbrush. Since the bright-red-with-spots amanitas grow in similar conditions, though more widely, and are very easy to spot, they are a nice indicator species. Today I saw the most beautiful and perfectly shiny electric red bulb which had just burst through the duff ; so round, so perfect... Anyhow, mushroom hunters with an eye to keeping the spots secret will knock them over to keep the casual looter from favored haunts.

I been seeing lots of holes, where presumably somebodys are ripping out the whole shooting match (we've spoken before about the proper technique for harvesting, which is to leave the bottom-most portion of the stalk in the ground so as to keep the mycelium as undisturbed as possible) but until today it's been sorry for me, my friend. After the most recent rains, I am again motivated to get into the woods, ride a bicycle, and rustle up some grub-free porcinis. I found one as big as your face and several which were roughly tennis ball sized.


 leaving the stalk

and covering the tracks. Oh, I play the game too. It's a good one, a treasure hunt. The thrill of finding a hardy specimen is all out of proportion to it's not inconsiderable deliciousness; especially when the picking have been so slim.

Since we are on the subject of food, I will reveal that I've been off the wheat for 2 months now and it feels good. I stopped drinking beer during the week as well. I've dropped 21 lbs. Well, I ate a lot of bagels! My elbows don't ache like they used to, either.

There are several varieties of chard volunteering on either side of the trail along that one section of valley floor, so I stopped and cut a bunch of leaves. We had fresh mushrooms sauteed with onions, balsamic vinegar, swiss chard and toasted walnuts over quinoa-based pasta tonight for dinner, and the remainder are in the dehydrator right now.

1 comment:

Anonymous said... is one badass, 'shroom hunting, dietarily(?) correct M'fer