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August 30, 2010


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We were in the mountains over the weekend and they was awash with funghi gatherers. Here the greatest danger rather than mushroom poisining seems to be that people in search for the remotest spot fall off the sides of mountains! 18 have died in Italy in the last 10 days in this way.

By the way, you couldn't tell us where your secret spot is...?


That is crazy! I mean, I understand when you get in the zone, but I draw the line at putting myself in mortal danger!
My secret spot is in the thickly overgrown area down the left path and just before the intersection with the other path. But I'm not telling you what forest it is in... ;)


How very fun to find those hazelnuts. We planted about 5 trees a couple years ago and have our first nut this summer...just one though, but it's a start. I loved hearing your thoughts on foraging for mushrooms, it has always been one of our favorite spring events.:)


That is quite a long wait for a singular nut! Hopefully next year they will really start producing...
I must admit I got a severe case of mushroom envy from the morels on your blog :) - that is unfortunately another one we are missing out on around here.

Paul Cook

Well, Laura, I must say that I would have passed these nuts by, having considered them to be acorns. And, I also must confess that I know nothing about edible mushrooms, owing this perhaps to my medical bias. Suffice it to say that you could teach me a great deal about foraging. Perhaps, you and Richard should host a class in local foraging. Some of the "shrooms" would make a great sandwich with fresh white cheese and tomatoes.


Haha, I would have picked them up even if they were acorns! :) When I get my hands on some I am going to try to make an acorn flour as the Native Americans did. But as far as foraging goes, I am far from being an expert! I'd have to take a few classes myself before I could think about teaching others (which I would eventually love to do). And that does sound like a good sandwich - I will have to try that! It would be perfect for a parasol mushroom (or maybe raw puffballs), if I could just find any of those!


Just an FYI as well, usually pharmacists in France are good people to go to for identifying mushrooms. They will tell you if they are good or not. In case Richard is not sure, or not around when you need him! (They can also dress wounds, and all kinds of other things that they don't do in the US, it always amazes me...)


Oh yeah, Richard mentioned that to me once. I've never tried it though - seems an odd thing that every pharmacist would have a solid knowledge of mushrooms...but maybe I should see!


I think that it is part of their training to become pharmacists. Remember ze are not necessairly talking about the people working behing the counter; but the pharmacist. A lot of French people use their pharmacist to ID mushrooms, they usually pull out really detailed books and go over the characteristics zith you.


Ah ok, cool. I wasn't so sure about the people behind the counter!

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