Patoka Lake wildlife specialist Brian Finch says people are look for morel mushrooms, but remember to ask for permission from the landowners before venturing out to find these “nuggets of gold.”
What are morel mushrooms?
Morels are found throughout North America, and they are probably the best known edible mushroom. They range in color from black to blonde, and they can grow to be up to a foot tall.
However, most of the time, they grow to height of three to five inches.
Why do people hunt morel mushrooms?
Morel mushroom hunting is popular for several reasons. Many people love the taste of morels and describe the taste as “nutty” and “meaty.” They’re commonly eaten cooked or dried.
Finch says the flavor of the morel mushroom changes depending on how long they’re cooked. He says they taste good by themselves mixed with garlic or olive oil or served with venison.
Also, because they’re so popular and not found anywhere but in the wild, foragers commonly sell morels and make up to $50 per pound. It’s important to note that anyone who wants to sell morels must be properly certified.
Where are they most commonly found?
They typically grow on the edge of forested areas, and they often grown around ash, aspen, elm, and oak trees. They thrive in moist soil around decayed vegetation, so search for dead trees and leaf piles.
It’s also important to make sure you are not trespassing on anyone’s property while morel hunting.
They are usually three to five inches in length, but they can grow as long as 12 inches.