Fried Chicken Of The Woods

Ever wondered what it was like to eat mushrooms you’ve foraged from the woods? Michigan is home to a variety of delicious, safe-to-consume fungi. Unless you have a death wish, I wouldn’t suggest eating just any mushroom you find. I also wouldn’t suggest relying on word-of-mouth. Once, we had other Morel hunters try to convince us that False Morels were edible…unfortunately, many have been sickened because of this myth: False Morel Poisonings. We’ve found this book helpful on dozens of occasions, it may have even saved our lives –
National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms:
Tips for foraging wild mushrooms:
  • Use a small knife to cut the mushroom above the ground, rather than pulling it out
    • this helps leave spores behind
  • Carry your harvest back in a breathable container
    • paper lunch sack or loosely-crocheted bag both work great
  • Check regulations in your state for harvesting as each area is different
    • DNR or other state web pages are good resources
  • Clean mushrooms thoroughly upon returning to camp/home, and store in a cool, dry area
    • I prefer wrapping them in a paper towel to absorb any excess moisture

Recipe

  1. Cut the cleaned mushrooms into bite-size pieces and freeze for at least 24 hours
  2. Prepare batter in small bowl or tupperware – you can use any wet batter for this recipe, I chose Drake’s due to ease and availability
  3. Place mushroom pieces in to the bowl of batter, smothering each piece liberally
  4. Heat 3-4 quarts of Peanut or Vegetable oil in a deep pan or wok over medium-high heat
  5. Once heated, carefully drop mushroom pieces in to the oil and cook for about 5-7 minutes per batch
  6. The mushrooms are ready to remove from the oil when they begin to brown in color
  7. Serve alongside your favorite dish, maybe even with sauce?
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