I was going to tell you about chestnuts this week, but then I found chanterelles and while chestnuts will keep (especially as I've made them into chestnut flour), chanterelles won't. If you've been reading the
Also harvesting sections of these posts, you'll know that I've been gathering quite a variety of mushrooms over the past few months. I've really got the mushroom-hunting bug!
One of the most prized mushrooms is the highly distinctive chanterelle. The yellow-orange funnels with the wrinkles (as opposed to gills) running a long way down the stem are easy to recognise even the first time you see them (though there is a false chanterelle, but luckily it isn't poisonous). Yesterday I went out to see if I could find any mushrooms to go in some pasties and struck lucky with a ring of chanterelles. They weren't at their best, a bit old, and half buried under wet leaves so quite a bit had gone slimy, but still chanterelles. These are substantial enough that even after cutting off the damaged parts, there's still a worthwhile amount left.
I may have got slightly carried away with picking, as I ended up with more than I needed for the pasties. Here's what I had left today:
I also had a bit of pastry left over from the pasties, so I fried up the chanterelles with onion and garlic plus a bit of beef-in-ale stock (left over from... I forget) and lots of cornflour to make it gloopy, then went for a jam tart type arrangement:
Oddly, the pasties had a stronger chanterelle flavour than the tarts - maybe I used too much onion. Never mind, both were delicious, and excellent ways of using free food.Also harvesting
Rosehips (for syrup, or possibly fizzy wine)
Rowan and crab apple jelly
Courgette puree (from freezer)
Chestnut flour pancakes
Rosehip syrup (both on pancakes and diluted as a drink)
Blackcurrant wine (this year's)
Dandelion flower tea
Bay herb ale
Foraged food challenge summary page here.