What's for dinner in your neck of the woods? After a good day foraging with an eye out for Chanterelles (one of my favorites this time of year), which are usually all over the place about now, we didn't turn up a single one. It has been a very dry summer and I am not surprised that these delicacies are underrepresented right now. We did find a few other goodies though.
See Kaia with one of her finds, this is a giant puffball shroom, Calvatia gigantea. This is the one that I tell novice wild harvesters to start with as they are relatively difficult to confuse with anything you don't want to eat. Basically, if it is large and you cut it in half and it is smooth and white inside, it is edible. You HAVE to cut it in half though. If there is even the slightest evidence of cap and gills or color, do NOT eat it! I strongly encourage foraging, but do so with someone experienced until you figure things out. It is a particularly rewarding way to spend quality family time in the cyclical cadence of nature! And, it endows our children with much more than knowledge on what to drink/eat and when.
Puffballs are an interesting culinary mushroom. I like to marinade them in a bit of apple cider vinegar and fresh lemon juice along with garlic, onion, oregano, a pinch of mineral sea salt [smoked in this case], and LOTS of fresh black pepper. Then I steam sauté them in equal parts white wine, spring water, and Nama Shoyu. The earthy taste of puff balls is quite interesting given the texture which is kind of, well, ...gooey... Do check em out.
For dinner, I then added the shrooms to sprouted risotto which consists of sprouted brown rice, sprouted golden flax and lentils. Check out these Padron Chiles from Melissa's. Anyone know why these are so special? Also, what is the purple stuff? Check it out: Superfoods Shroom Sprouted Risotto Surprise (pg 127 Risotto with a major twist!).