We meet a lot of people at our tasting sessions who confess that they wouldn’t have the confidence to pick mushrooms in the wild. They’re really keen to have a go and they’ve often got a book to take with them but we hear the same refrain again and again: “I can’t tell from the photo or description in the book if it’s the right mushroom so I don’t dare pick it.”
A really good way to get over that fear is to go out with an expert who will show you what you need to look out for to recognise a few varieties of wild mushrooms you will then be able to pick with confidence. The good news is that many of the tastiest and most common funghi can be classed as ‘beginners mushrooms’ – this means they can’t be confused with any unsavoury variety of mushroom. Chanterelles, ceps & hedgehog mushrooms for instance all fall into this category – common, delicious and unmistakeable, once you have learnt the characteristics of that family.
During late summer and early autumn we run a variety of fungus forays: afternoon walks in the High Peak and three day stays on Orust Island in South West Sweden, where you will be able to learn a lot more than just mushroom identification. On last year’s Gather & Cook breaks our guests sliced porcini for drying, made Winter Chanterelle mushroom sauce, picked and tasted at least ten varieties of edible wild mushrooms and went ‘boat mushrooming’ on a trip to a small uninhabited island in the fjord. It’s not all about funghi – a popular excursion was to the quaint fishing village of Mollösund where we visited the local fishmonger and had a seafood feast when we got home.
If you want to extend your stay in Sweden to experience more of what this beautiful country has to offer talk to us – our houses are available to rent for longer periods, and we’re more than happy to give you suggestions for activities to do in the area or other parts of the country. The west coast is renowned for its seafood if you are into food tourism and there are of course any number of water based sports like kayaking, fishing or sailing to do, whilst the terrain in this region really lends itself to cycling, walking & horse riding if you prefer to stay on land.
For more ideas you can visit the official site for tourism in Sweden here. Bohuslän is the region in West Sweden Orust island is located in, and more specific information on our lovely island Orust in the Southern Bohuslän archipelago, can be found here.