Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Mushroom hunting in the Marche

15 Ottobre
Yesterday, I went mushroom hunting with a neighbor and his brother-in-law, which was appropriate since it was my brother's birthday and he is a huge morel mushroom hunter. The guide was just like my brother Jim, who seemingly knows every tree which has ever put forth a mushroom spore, and at the end of 2 hours we had about 20 lbs of mushrooms. We followed the forest work by a lunch of pasta and shrooms and too much wine. I still have another 4 bags in the freezer for future risotto or meat dishes for those who want to head our way. Most of my friends and family know I am not a big mushroom eater, but these were exceptional and I might now change my ways.
We will probably press our red grapes in the next couple of days and depending on who wins the argument, the dried white grapes in a couple of weeks to make the passito. Today, I added compost to the garden, placed another 350 iron training poles in the vineyard while hoeing weeds and this after helping our contadino neighbor pick his olives (he has promised to return the favor when we pick ours).
The weather here is perfect for those planning for vacations next year-remember October-good weather, no tourists and the chance to harvest olives!
The pictures show some good examples of the variety of mushrooms, my 2 hosts, Bacco enjoying a swim in the creek, the mushrooms cooking down and Raffaele and Corrado waiting for lunch (look at the level of wine in the bottles and lunch had not yet begun!

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