When we arrived at the chanterelle patch, it seemed like there was nothing there, so we kept walking. But, as I was about to leave, I noticed a disturbed spot of earth and leaves that looked like something was pushing up from underneath. I brushed some of the leave aside an found 2 enormous chanterelles! I'm not sure if it's a varietal thing, but the chanterelles that I have found there always seem to be just barely breaking the surface, and are quite really after they're picked, quite unlike this pretty "cooking show" quality mushroom in the picture above. It's so weird how they're just growing there by this guy's driveway. I had to cut the bigger one in half just to fit it into the container and it had the most beautiful earthy apricot fragrance. I hope I'm not taking mushrooms from someone who's expecting them to be there, LOL.
It started raining shortly after that, and the only blewitt we found was infested with worms, but it was at a completely new patch, so now I know of yet another place to find them! It's too bad that they get infested so fast, because they seem to be really common around here.
By the time we got back to the apartments, we were soaked. None of us had brought an umbrella.
It took me a while to clean the dirt off of the chanterelles, and following a tip I found on the Internet, prepared them simply by sautéing them in some butter. The website said they would taste almost like steak that way, which I think was a bit of a stretch, but I can see how they would be a really great meat substitute. Texture-wise, these things are amazing! I can't wait to go chanterelle hunting for real in a forest! I just need to figure out where a good place to look would be.
I'm finally hanging out with my Aunt Ellen tomorrow. She lives in South San Francisco, but I haven't seen her since before the Fall term started. Hopefully the weather's better!