May 15, 2010

We found morels.

We looked the hard way yesterday... and the easy way today:

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At the Dane County Farmers Market:

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Where they'll sell you the supplies to grow your own...

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... mushrooms. But not morel mushrooms, which is what we buy:

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And on to other things... curds perhaps....

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Now, we're home, I'm blogging the morels, and Meade is getting some of them ready to fry into the morning eggs.... mmmmm.

***

See the jeans on that guy in the last photograph? That's what, chez Meadhouse, we call Randy Normal Jeans.

25 comments:

c3 said...

learn to eat corn stalks; they're cheaper

AllenS said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Hasenstab said...

I bought fresh morels two weeks ago at a bar in Leland, just south of Natural Bridge State Park.

There are two bars in Leland. The blue one is Sprecher's; the beige one across the street sells morels. I have forgotten its name.

The owner picks the morels fresh most mornings, and won't say where.

c3 said...

Re: guy in the second picture.

Given his knowledge of the local growing season, he's known as

the Morel Authority

Omaha1 said...

We have not had a very good morel season except for one day when we were allowed to hunt on some private property. We found just over a dozen that day.

We went out yesterday and found no mushrooms but are now celebrating a bountiful harvest of ticks. I should have taken a picture of the one crawling up the screen of my laptop earlier this morning...

edutcher said...

Clearly, you guys are big into 'shrooms.

Why do I think some of this is a result of the Meadehouse merger?

In any case, it's nice you have places to go on the weekends.

c3 said...

Re: guy in the second picture.

Given his knowledge of the local growing season, he's known as

the Morel Authority


If he runs for political office, he should be reminded you can't legislate morelity.

Big Mike said...

I take back what I said before about looking for all-wheel drive in your wagon so you have enough off-road capability to stalk the wily morel.

If you're going to hunt for morels at farmer's market, you could even have a rear-wheel drive low-rider.

Meade said...

Just remember - No Morel Land-Grant Colleges Act -- no University of Wisconsin/Madison.

Richard said...

Great photos. I haven't seen baskets of morels like that in quite some time.

TosaGuy said...

Sit on the capitol steps sometime and just watch the crowd at the farmers market....it moves all in the same direction in a slow, zombie like way.

Big Mike said...

@Meade just don't go looking for them in the Morel plots at the University of Illinois -- essentially a small (6/10 of an acre) corn field just north of the quad and next to the Undergraduate Library.

El Pollo Real said...

A cursory glance through older "mushroom"-tagged posts leads me to believe that Althouse was without morels pre-Meade.

Fun Fact: D.H. Lawrence called early drafts of Sons And Lovers "Paul Morel."

chuck b. said...

Once I go out in the morning, I cannot come back home to have breakfast. Breakfast can only happen before going out.

Kev said...

We found morels.

Did you find any ethecs or standurds alongside them? ;-)

(The above reminds me of when Bruce Willis and Demi Moore had a daughter that they named Rumer; some wag in the local paper suggested that their next kid should be named Gossup.)

traditionalguy said...

The morel diet has not come this far south yet. Do you add them to omlettes, or just scramble in pieces? The portabellos are the only ones popular around here.

Ann Althouse said...

"Once I go out in the morning, I cannot come back home to have breakfast. Breakfast can only happen before going out."

You wake up at 7. The Farmers Market started at 6. By 8 the crowd shambling around the Capitol Square will feel like rush hour traffic. You have to decide what your priorities are. We got in there and back before 8:30, whereupon we made coffee and started frying morels.

Ann Althouse said...

@tradguy We're trying different things. We've fried them in butter with and without dredging them in flour first. I'd do that and then take them out and fry your usual scrambled eggs is the mushroomy fat that's left in the pan.

I did not like the way they had them cooked at Harvest, an expensive restaurant that we chose last Saturday because they had morels on the menu. I'm not sure how they went about cooking them, but as served, they were flabby and in watery liquid.

They should be nice and hot and browned in butter, I think.

Michael Hasenstab said...

Althouse, you're right about how they should be prepared.

Sauteed in melted butter, with some cracked black pepper, shallot and garlic is best. Add a bit of good red wine or rich beef stock, remove the morels, reduce the liquid, that add back the morels if they are being served over beef. Garnish with chopped chives.

As my whimsy leads me.. said...

But do mushrooms have a taste of their own, or do they just soak up whatever you cook them in? Why eat mushrooms over anything else? The ones I've had are like a chewy, slimy tire. I fully own my lack of sophistication on the matter, and I'd like some description of why they are so wonderful, if someone can give it. Should I try them? Why? What kind is best?

Toy

Irene said...

I would follow Michael Hasenstab's method, but I would substitute Italian parsley for the chives.

I then would use the mixture as the base for risotto.

Trooper York said...

Hey where did you get that photo of our favorite missing commenter in the first photo?

Mr. Bingley said...

by gum I love curds!

eat cheese or die!

MadisonMan said...

I only bought cheese curds and tomato plants this morning, but not on the Square. I go to the DOT. No hassle.

Four different tomato varieties. I hope they do better this year, meaning I hope we have a hotter summer than last year's icebox.

knox said...

That guy in the second photo has some major Sam Elliot hair.

Omaha1 said...

whimsy said..."Why eat mushrooms over anything else? The ones I've had are like a chewy, slimy tire."

Some people just don't like mushrooms. That's fine with me since it leaves more for me to eat :-)

Morels like other mushrooms have a very subtle flavor that is not really comparable to any other food. I don't get the "tire" part of your description since (properly) cooked mushrooms are usually very smooth and silky in texture. Frying in cracker crumbs or flour gives them a nice crispy coating.