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Morel Morsels - Yum!

Updated on April 9, 2014

Mmmm - Morels

"Are they there yet?" This grown-up version of a child's impatient travels isn't about reaching a destination. It's about finding morel mushrooms in the very short time when they might be discovered in the woods.

Mushroom hunters watch the weather closely. They measure ground temperature. They develop theories about how to find these elusive little delicacies. They follow websites for information about whether anyone has found any this year the way Deadheads once trackedJerry Garcia's path.

The two morels featured in this photograph will be used to make an infused oil that we'll enjoy in later months, long after they've gone into hiding for another year. We found these today, in late March. Usually they don't appear until April, but we've had an unusually warm winter and have no idea whether to expect a bumper crop or if they'll be scarcer than normal.

Keep reading to learn more about why we love morels, how to find them, and what to do with them.

This is a false morel and should NOT be eaten!
This is a false morel and should NOT be eaten!

Edible vs. Poisonous Mushrooms

You already know there are toxic mushrooms, and you probably are familiar with a few edible varieties like the button mushrooms sold in cans for everyday cooking, straw mushrooms used in Chinese cuisine, and meaty Portabellas that can substitute for meat in vegetarian sandwiches. What you might not realize is that certain other mushroom varieties are both edible and delicious, but unsuitable for commercial cultivation. That means you have to hunt them yourself or buy them from someone who does.

While some mushroom varieties are edible, and some are poisonous, some are "edible with caution." Unlike deadly mushrooms, these may be eaten in small degrees, by some people, but aren't suitable for everyone. They may contain certain chemicals that can create stomach problems if too much is eaten, or if any of it is eaten by someone sensitive to them.

Edible mushrooms, too, can produce allergic reactions in some people, so it's important to test your reaction with a small amount the first time, especially if you're prone to allergies or have asthma.

Morels are easily recognizable and novice mushroom hunters aren't likely to be fooled into plucking a poisonous lookalike, though there are a couple of lookalikes that should be avoided.

The photo above shows a False morel from the Verpa genus. Note its similar appearance. False morels can be dangerous, and in rare cases, deadly. They're easily distinguished from true morels by their stalks, which aren't completely hollow, as morel stalks always are. Also, the stem of Verpas are connected to the cap near the top of its cone, similar to the way an umbrella handle attaches to its parasol. Morel stems are part of the cap. Slicing a morel in half will reveal its hollow core and the stem will remain intact with the cap.

Beefsteak mushrooms can also be dangerous. While some claim it's safe when properly prepared, it has been known to cause liver failure or death in some cases. Like the verpas, it doesn't have an entirely hollow core.

To view images of how the stems of true morels appear different, please visit Michigan Morels.

This information is not intended as a guide to identifying mushrooms, and shouldn't be used as one. The photos below are for informational purposes only. To learn more about mushroom identification, please use a guide written by experts or consult a professional who can provide in-depth information! (I recommend a couple of good ones below this photo gallery.) If you're interested in technical information about toxicity, visit Tom Volk's page for a far better explanation that I can provide.

True Morels - Edible When Cooked

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Black morels (morchella conica or morchella esculenta - taxonomy of morels can be tricky!) are safe to eat when cooked. Photo by Jason Hollinger licensed by CC 2.0.When they first sprout, black morels have a grayish appearance, and are often called "grays." Michael Kensinger. Licensed by Creative Commons 2.0.G.P Macklin's photo of a golden morel (morchella esculenta) shows that they can grow to be quite large. CC 2.0 license.Greg at Flickr provides another view of goldens, these much smaller. Goldens may also be called "blonds." CC 2.0 license.Half morels, as shown in this photo by Michael Kensington, are reputed to be of lower quality and flavor, but still edible. Their caps show some skirting around the stem and can be confusing for beginners because they look similar to verpas, which haMichael Kensingston provides a clear shot of a half-morel's skirt. The caps of black and blond morels attach at the base of the cap. CC 2.0 license.This shot shows sliced morels ready for a recipe. No morels should be eaten raw. Photo by MarkInspx at Flickr and used with CC 2.0 license.
Black morels (morchella conica or morchella esculenta - taxonomy of morels can be tricky!) are safe to eat when cooked. Photo by Jason Hollinger licensed by CC 2.0.
Black morels (morchella conica or morchella esculenta - taxonomy of morels can be tricky!) are safe to eat when cooked. Photo by Jason Hollinger licensed by CC 2.0.
When they first sprout, black morels have a grayish appearance, and are often called "grays." Michael Kensinger. Licensed by Creative Commons 2.0.
When they first sprout, black morels have a grayish appearance, and are often called "grays." Michael Kensinger. Licensed by Creative Commons 2.0.
G.P Macklin's photo of a golden morel (morchella esculenta) shows that they can grow to be quite large. CC 2.0 license.
G.P Macklin's photo of a golden morel (morchella esculenta) shows that they can grow to be quite large. CC 2.0 license.
Greg at Flickr provides another view of goldens, these much smaller. Goldens may also be called "blonds." CC 2.0 license.
Greg at Flickr provides another view of goldens, these much smaller. Goldens may also be called "blonds." CC 2.0 license.
Half morels, as shown in this photo by Michael Kensington, are reputed to be of lower quality and flavor, but still edible. Their caps show some skirting around the stem and can be confusing for beginners because they look similar to verpas, which ha
Half morels, as shown in this photo by Michael Kensington, are reputed to be of lower quality and flavor, but still edible. Their caps show some skirting around the stem and can be confusing for beginners because they look similar to verpas, which ha
Michael Kensingston provides a clear shot of a half-morel's skirt. The caps of black and blond morels attach at the base of the cap. CC 2.0 license.
Michael Kensingston provides a clear shot of a half-morel's skirt. The caps of black and blond morels attach at the base of the cap. CC 2.0 license.
This shot shows sliced morels ready for a recipe. No morels should be eaten raw. Photo by MarkInspx at Flickr and used with CC 2.0 license.
This shot shows sliced morels ready for a recipe. No morels should be eaten raw. Photo by MarkInspx at Flickr and used with CC 2.0 license.

Dangerous Lookalikes

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Verpa bohemia is considered by some to be edible, but has been known to cause serious problems in some people. This photo by Jason Hollinger shows how similar it looks to a morel. Photo available at Wikipedia under CC license.Jason also shows how the verpa differs from a true morel. True morels have completely hollow stems. Photo available at Wikipedia under CC license.Morel hunter Kristy knows to avoid the brainy-looking beefsteak. She discovered this one right next to what appeared to be a blond morel, but to be on the safe side, she waited a few days to make sure the blonder mushroom didn't change color or chang
Verpa bohemia is considered by some to be edible, but has been known to cause serious problems in some people. This photo by Jason Hollinger shows how similar it looks to a morel. Photo available at Wikipedia under CC license.
Verpa bohemia is considered by some to be edible, but has been known to cause serious problems in some people. This photo by Jason Hollinger shows how similar it looks to a morel. Photo available at Wikipedia under CC license.
Jason also shows how the verpa differs from a true morel. True morels have completely hollow stems. Photo available at Wikipedia under CC license.
Jason also shows how the verpa differs from a true morel. True morels have completely hollow stems. Photo available at Wikipedia under CC license.
Morel hunter Kristy knows to avoid the brainy-looking beefsteak. She discovered this one right next to what appeared to be a blond morel, but to be on the safe side, she waited a few days to make sure the blonder mushroom didn't change color or chang
Morel hunter Kristy knows to avoid the brainy-looking beefsteak. She discovered this one right next to what appeared to be a blond morel, but to be on the safe side, she waited a few days to make sure the blonder mushroom didn't change color or chang

Field Guides

National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms (National Audubon Society Field Guides)
National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms (National Audubon Society Field Guides)

Photos and technical descriptions of mushrooms in their natural habitats, plus guidelines for cooking and eating wild mushrooms.

 
North American Mushrooms: A Field Guide To Edible And Inedible Fungi (Falconguide)
North American Mushrooms: A Field Guide To Edible And Inedible Fungi (Falconguide)

This book doesn't provide information about morels, but does cover other common North American edible mushrooms.

 
Mushrooms Demystified
Mushrooms Demystified

This book covers hundreds of varieties in great detail, and is well-suited for beginners and experienced hunters alike.

 
How to Find Morels
How to Find Morels

Highly rated by Midwesterners but touted as applicable across the U.S. this book provides a good starting point for hunting mushrooms according to reviews. However, you may be able to contact a mycologist at a nearby university for information about morels in your area.

 

Why We Love 'Em

The earliest hints of spring are my favorite time of year. Daffodils and redbud trees announce that all is well in the world (or least, here in the midwestern United States!) The sun warms up, birds visit our feeders for sunflower seeds, and the whole world seems to get reborn. Hunting morels puts me into the heart of it. Searching for them is a bit of an intellectual challenge that also happens to provide great nature walks. Oh, yeah, and then there are the bragging rights you can claim when you've hit paydirt!

Finding, cooking, and feasting on morels is a process that's not precisely a religious experience, but comes close! For me, it's a celebration of springtime that boosts my spirits after a long winter.

Morels have a unique taste that has been compared to a quality steak. Personally, I find them to have a very mild flavor and wouldn't compare it to any meats I've ever tasted, but they also don't compare to common mushrooms, either.

Last year, we found several pounds of golden and gray varieties. I probably should have dried some or flash frozen them to save them, but instead I invited others over to share in our happy bounty. Twice I served fried morels just the way my husband likes them, and on another occasion I made pasta with morel sauce (which wasn't unlike alfredo sauce but had a subtle, light richness that was unique.)

To prepare morels, soak them in water with a tablespoon of salt overnight to remove any hidden larvae. If you're not used to gathering your own food, this might sound gross, but even the stuff in canned goods goes through a similar process! Rinse them well afterward to remove any dirt, but be careful not to crush the delicate caps.

To fry them, you can simply slice them and cook them in a bit of butter with salt and pepper, or add a light breading and season to taste. They can be dipped in a beaten egg and coated with flour or crushed saltine crackers, too. These seem to be the most favored method for cooking them, but if you like a little creativity, try this recipe (shown in photo above) from MyRecipes.com

The most varied site I've seen for morel recipes features instructions for Mushroom Tarragon Confit, Morel Poppers, Naturally Wild Stroganoff, and about thirty other recipes. The site also sells mushroom related products (six pounds of wild mushroom ravioli costs about a hundred dollars).

You can also make infused oils to add flavor to salads throughout the year.

Why Aren't There More Recipes?

(Because there aren't more morels!)

When I looked for recipes last year, I didn't find many. I believe that this is due to their relative rarity.

Morel life cycles are slightly different than other species of mushrooms. The spores only produce fruit (that's the mushroom that we can collect) every five years, and very specific conditions must exist - a certain amount of rain, the right day versus nighttime temperatures, types of nutrients in the soil, and more.

This is part of what has made the quest for commercial production fail! Ronald Ower found a method for growing them and was granted a patent for his process in 1982. His partners created a company for morel production, but to date they haven't reached mainstream consumers. (Read about their company, Diversified National Products, here .)

Veteran mushroom hunters have dozens of theories on where to find mushrooms and what makes one area more productive than another. Experts have found ways to reliably grow them at home in small batches for those who want to avoid ticks and other creepy crawlies, though using a kit like the ones found below may be easier than their techniques.

Of course, you don't have to use others' recipes if you already have favorite meals that you add mushrooms into for flavor. Twice this season I've scrambled eggs using my own way: Melt some butter with a couple cloves of sliced garlic and 4-5 morels, finely chopped. Cook over medium heat while mixing up 5-6 eggs with 1/3 cup or so of milk. Pour eggs in and scramble, adding salt and pepper to taste. I sprinkle some shredded cheese on it and my husband and I enjoy the rich flavor with some buttered toast. (I don't even care if it's unhealthy!)

If we find a good batch this year, I plan to craft recipes for morel butter and morel mayonnaise. (I think the flavored butter would season green beans nicely, and a mayonnaise would be fantastic for turkey sandwiches.) If we get especially lucky and have more than we can eat, I'll preserve them for use later.

DIY Morel Mushrooms - No Foraging Necessary

Mycological Dried Morel Mushrooms, .5-Ounce Packages (Pack of 2)
Mycological Dried Morel Mushrooms, .5-Ounce Packages (Pack of 2)

Though they're pricey, dried morels can be reconstituted with water or chicken broth and used as if you'd found them yourself.

 
The Art of Cooking Morels
The Art of Cooking Morels

More recipes in one book than I found on the entire Internet last year!

 
Rainbow Seeds GROW YOUR OWN FRESH MOREL MUSHROOMS ~ EASY GROW KIT ~
Rainbow Seeds GROW YOUR OWN FRESH MOREL MUSHROOMS ~ EASY GROW KIT ~

I love getting out into the woods, so I probably won't be trying these, but then again, the idea of having morels in my backyard is tempting...

 

Ready to Try Your Hand?

Morels fruit when daytime temperatures are in the 70s and evening temps are in the 40s, usually between April and May, but sometimes a month earlier or later depending on weather. They like to sprout overnight after a cleansing rain, according to many sources. They tend to proliferate around dying trees, and are most often associated with dead or dying elms and fruit trees, especially apple and pear.

It seems most morel hunters have theories about how to find them, but there are no hard and fast rules other than "know your trees." My husband and I look for dead or dying elms, sycamores, and cottonwoods. (See the photo gallery below for identification tips.) My own observations are that we spot them most often in areas of speckled sunlight - under wild roses, for instance - and in damp earth. Our friend Dave likes to say, "Morels love moisture, but they don't like to get their feet wet." In other words, damp is good, but very dry or soggy earth isn't conducive to finding them.

I first learned of morels about fifteen years ago, but never hunted them. In those days, I spent a lot of time in the woods but had never noticed any, even after I saw photos and read about them. One day, while metal detecting in a church courtyard near my home, I found a nice, tall specimen in the grass. It was the only one I in the area. I took it home, cleaned and sauteed it with some garlic, and my love of them was born.

I worked full time and never went hunting for any, though. My next find came over a decade later, when I discovered one in another yard. It, too, was growing in the grass. I carefully searched the rest of the yard and found fourteen more. It had been a harsh winter, with two notable ice storms that had struck down not one, but two elm trees at the house. Two of the morels I found were far from either tree, but the majority of them were within about fifteen feet.

Last year marked my first official morel hunting season. My husband and I went to a state park with some friends. Four of us found about six pounds total, which we split evenly. Later, the same group went to two other forested sites without any luck whatsoever! No matter - good friends and nice weather always make for a great day. Our last trip consisted of just my husband and myself, returning to one of the sites where we'd had no luck - his friend's heavily wooded, 20-acre plot of land. I wasn't enthused. After all, there hadn't been a single morel when we'd gone two weeks earlier. My husband spotted the first, and excitedly called me over. Together, we added three more pounds of them to our season's total. That same day, we discovered two growing in the dirt beneath a tree in our flower beds.

The bottom line is to always keep your eyes peeled. Seasoned hunters will not tell you where their favorite sites are, but they will offer you their theories if you ask. (You can find plenty of info with an Internet search too, though it can make you crazy reading all the conflicting stories!) One truth is found on every single site, though: Becoming familiar with tree species will help you identify promising locations.

If you're ready to get out there and look for yourself, be prepared:

- Take a pocket knife. Although you can pull them from the ground, veteran hunters pinch or cut the stems for two reasons. First, they claim it will help the area keep producing. Second, it makes cleaning your find easier if you don't have clumps of dirt clinging to them.

- Use a mesh bag to carry your finds. If spores do contribute to ongoing growth in later seasons, you'll be planting more as you walk. That's better than washing them down the sink, isn't it?

- Douse yourself with a good tick repellent, because you'll come into contact with them every time you set foot in the woods. You can reduce the risks associated with disease-carrying ticks by discouraging them from climbing on you in the first place. (Ticks are known to carry Lyme disease .)

- Wear jeans and a cotton shirt that brambles are less likely to cling to. T-shirts are not a good choice, but non-stretchy cotton weaves are.

- Be aware of poison oak, poison ivy, poison sumac, and nettles. Wear long-sleeved shirts and jeans if you're susceptible to any of these, and bring an itch-relief gel in case you do brush against some. (See photos below.)

- Wear good hiking shoes or boots. Although few snakes are poisonous and most won't bite unless you threaten them, if you do come across one that strikes at you, they'll strike in your calf or ankle area. Over the years, I've made a few hundred trips through wooded areas and have come across a few snakes, but none has ever tried to strike. They're more likely to slither away as quickly as possible. (Probably because we are just so much bigger than they are!) Still, I wear leather boots when I go.

Get Your Gear

If you want to venture out, don't go unprepared! Toxic plants and pesky bugs are the biggest concerns we have. (There could be snakes, too, I suppose, but I haven't run into any during morel hunts. I suspect they're not quite done with their hibernation so early in the spring.)

Good shoes will help you step down on thorny vines. Effective insect repellent is my "must-have" tool for morel hunting. And the right clothing can make a big difference in how comfortable you are.

Altama Footwear Men's Desert Boot 5853 Boots
Altama Footwear Men's Desert Boot 5853 Boots

The boots I wear were issued by the military and are very similar to these.They're comfortable, extremely sturdy, and still in great shape after eight years of regular use.

 
Sawyer Products SP657 Premium Permethrin Clothing Insect Repellent Trigger Spray, 24-Ounce
Sawyer Products SP657 Premium Permethrin Clothing Insect Repellent Trigger Spray, 24-Ounce

Sawyer repels and kills ticks when you treat your clothing before heading into the undergrowth. Your clothing will stay treated through several washes, you won't be spraying chemicals on your skin, and it works great. We're using this for the 2014 season!

 
Columbia Sportswear Men's Bahama II Long Sleeve Shirt
Columbia Sportswear Men's Bahama II Long Sleeve Shirt

Designed for fishermen, this shirt's extra pockets, fabric that's engineered for keeping cool, splash and ultraviolet protection, and plenty of colors make this the ideal morel hunting shirt.

 

2014 Season Hunting

And Remembering Last Year's Hunt

Spring 2014 is here!

Last year, we found about 50 small ones - mostly grays, just a day after we woke to sleet falling in mid-April! We are keeping a keen eye out for small details that alert us to pull on our boots and spray ourselves with bug juice!

Although 2011 was my first official "hunt" for morels, my husband has been an avid forager for over ten years. We look for trees that have bark peeling or sloughing from their trunks, or fallen trees. We're especially interested in sycamores, elms, cottonwoods, pear, and apple trees. (Elms and apple trees are the most often recommended by experienced hunters, but as you'll see, they're not the only ones.) I suspect rough bark helps capture spores that are dropped when the trees lose their bark.

I wanted to give you a good idea of what to look for if you set out on your own, so last year (2013) I snapped some pictures that I hope you'll find helpful, which you'll see in the photo gallery below. When I posted them a year ago, I wrote, "We have gone out two different days, once for about an hour or so, when we found the two you saw in the intro photo up above and several of the half-morels (also called "peckerheads" by some people) and again today at three locations. We found a dozen blondes in a wooded area where people had been dumping trash near a railroad track, none at all in another area reputed to be a good site, and another ten in our own yard. (I dumped the water I used last year for rinsing beneath our pear tree, which may have helped.)"

Before you browse those shots, though, let me tell you where we have not found any and offer a couple of tips:

- Avoid areas that have deep oak leaf coverage. By deep, I mean a couple inches of oak leaves layered atop each other, carpeting the soil. If you aren't sure, oak leaves tend to be orange-y colored, while silvery, smaller leaves are more abundant in promising areas.

- Areas with walnuts and galls haven't been promising for us, either. Don't ask me why, but when I see them, I move past the area faster.

- Slightly spongy, damp ground is good, but not so damp that water or mud oozes around your shoes. Morels can be found in dry ground, but not in moisture-deprived earth.

- Areas with some, but not too much, sunlight seem to be more productive than very shady areas or very sunny ground.

- We use mesh bags that allow spores to be spread as we walk, just in case it helps them thrive better in later years. (Some say it does, while others claim the fruits are due to an underground network of "fibers" that has a long, scientific name I can't ever remember.)

- We pinch the stems to pluck them, leaving a portion in the ground, for the same reason.

Today's Results

Click thumbnail to view full-size
These goldens were found on slightly damp ground in a public area that looked a bit trashy but had the kind of trees we wanted.Besides the dozen goldens we found, a quick look around our pear tree produced an additional eight grays.Half a dozen or so of those blonds were found near the base of this tree.A look at the ground where they were found. I should have snapped a photo first, but I didn't think of it until it was too late.Morels often grow close together. Can you spot the group of three we found in the grass?We found eight between the point where I'm standing and the tree thirty feet away.This golden morel was just sprouting. Notice how it's still folded?Another look at the still sprouting morel, this time from a distance. This is what you'll see if you're hunting for them.I nearly stepped on this shy box turtle! Watching where you step is important. Creatures can be underfoot, but so can morels, which are easily crushed.Cleaning our find in salted water. I'll take them out and dry them on paper towels after an hour. Tomorrow, we'll have some fried shrooms. Yum!
These goldens were found on slightly damp ground in a public area that looked a bit trashy but had the kind of trees we wanted.
These goldens were found on slightly damp ground in a public area that looked a bit trashy but had the kind of trees we wanted.
Besides the dozen goldens we found, a quick look around our pear tree produced an additional eight grays.
Besides the dozen goldens we found, a quick look around our pear tree produced an additional eight grays.
Half a dozen or so of those blonds were found near the base of this tree.
Half a dozen or so of those blonds were found near the base of this tree.
A look at the ground where they were found. I should have snapped a photo first, but I didn't think of it until it was too late.
A look at the ground where they were found. I should have snapped a photo first, but I didn't think of it until it was too late.
Morels often grow close together. Can you spot the group of three we found in the grass?
Morels often grow close together. Can you spot the group of three we found in the grass?
We found eight between the point where I'm standing and the tree thirty feet away.
We found eight between the point where I'm standing and the tree thirty feet away.
This golden morel was just sprouting. Notice how it's still folded?
This golden morel was just sprouting. Notice how it's still folded?
Another look at the still sprouting morel, this time from a distance. This is what you'll see if you're hunting for them.
Another look at the still sprouting morel, this time from a distance. This is what you'll see if you're hunting for them.
I nearly stepped on this shy box turtle! Watching where you step is important. Creatures can be underfoot, but so can morels, which are easily crushed.
I nearly stepped on this shy box turtle! Watching where you step is important. Creatures can be underfoot, but so can morels, which are easily crushed.
Cleaning our find in salted water. I'll take them out and dry them on paper towels after an hour. Tomorrow, we'll have some fried shrooms. Yum!
Cleaning our find in salted water. I'll take them out and dry them on paper towels after an hour. Tomorrow, we'll have some fried shrooms. Yum!

We Didn't Take Bragging Rights, Though - (what our friends found...)

Click thumbnail to view full-size
James P. found 56 in the afternoon. We added another eight or so to our find when we visited him.Dave L. found 107 under a single tree, then added a few more later in the day. We'll try to do as well tomorrow!
James P. found 56 in the afternoon. We added another eight or so to our find when we visited him.
James P. found 56 in the afternoon. We added another eight or so to our find when we visited him.
Dave L. found 107 under a single tree, then added a few more later in the day. We'll try to do as well tomorrow!
Dave L. found 107 under a single tree, then added a few more later in the day. We'll try to do as well tomorrow!

Preserving Morels

There are several ways to preserve morels, and one way not to! Although the idea of canning them may be tempting, there are toxins in morels that are only released when they're cooked. Though I'm no expert, the National Center for Home Food Preservation reports that there is no safe way to pressure can morels, because they contain a toxin that is released only when they're cooked. Canning without cooking them first traps the toxins and can produce ill effects.

Fortunately, there are many other ways to save them for a rainy day. Morel lovers at The Great Morel offer simple techniques. We string a thread through ours and dry them, then place them in a container until I pull them out to cook. Another friend places his in paper bags and leaves them in his refrigerator.

And with that, I'm signing off, because tomorrow promises to be another great day for breathing in fresh air and searching for these tasty little nuggets. If I'm lucky, I'll be posting pictures of them soon.

For the Love of Angels

Thank you to these special contributors who have given this guide their blessings:

GetMoreInfo

BlackSpanielGallery

GottaLoveIt

Michey

WriterJanis

stargazer00

Do You Hunt Morels? Want to?

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    • KathyBatesel profile image
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      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      Thanks, Antonio W!

    • profile image

      antoniow 5 years ago

      Excellent lens, great job!

    • KathyBatesel profile image
      Author

      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      It's such a short fruiting season that it's easy to go years if you're not super attentive and eager to go! Thanks for stopping and blessing, Stargazer!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      Love, love, love morels! Yes, we found them near elm trees in a timber. I haven't had any in years.

    • KathyBatesel profile image
      Author

      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      @anonymous: One of our friends said the same thing this year about cedar trees. I wonder if that was weather related or not... hmm...

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      More of the morel mystery (from southern Indiana) - I've been an avid hunter for over 50 years, and this was the first year I've found them under cedar trees. Practically all the 7 pounds were near/under cedars. "Honey holes" produced little or nothing. I'll attribute it to the unusually warm weather (found yellows in March; another first). After last year though (about 1200 mushrooms), I can't complain.

    • KathyBatesel profile image
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      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      @gottaloveit2: It's actually quite difficult to confuse them once you've seen them. If you ever decide you'd like to learn, you can consult with a mycological society near you to participate in a hunt with them. You'd learn all you need to know and have fun, too. On the other hand, leaving more for us to find is hunky-dory as well!

    • gottaloveit2 profile image

      gottaloveit2 5 years ago

      I'd love to hunt morels but am too leery of getting the wrong mushrooms. I'll just resign myself to buying these expensive beauties.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      can you share your process for morel infused oil? is it as simply as storing in the oil or something more?

    • KathyBatesel profile image
      Author

      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      @Michey LM: Oh, I hope you get a chance. They're wonderful! We've gone out nearly every day, and gathered about 4 pounds of them so far. My husband fried one batch, and I made some scrambled eggs with them that are delicious. I'll be updating this with the how-to soon.

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 5 years ago

      I love mushrooms, but I never try Morels, so I know more about them, I can try.

    • KathyBatesel profile image
      Author

      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      @TTMall: Thanks, TTMall! Hope to see you out in the woods. ;)

    • TTMall profile image

      TTMall 5 years ago

      It looks very helpful. Thank you very much!