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Wild Chanterelles

   Oyster, shitake and lion's maine mushrooms  are a few of the edible mushroom species  that are cultivated in  Florida.  However, there are some mushrooms that can only be found growing  in the wild.    The golden chanterelle is popping up in our neck of the woods right now waiting to be discovered.                                                                                           Chantrell Mushrooms in the Woods
Chanterelles are probably the most well known and  most sought out mushrooms by chef's and foodies alike.  They have a mild peppery flavor and  beautiful delicate flesh which ranges from yellow to orange in color.  Their color makes them easy to spot in the woods. They can be as large as 5 inches in diameter, but 2 inches is closer to average. They do not grow in bunches or on logs. You will find them scattered on the ground floor in a wooded, well shaded, damp area. The season for Chanterelles in Northwest Florida is July to early Fall.   They can be discovered a couple days after a good rain.  They love humidly. So far we have had no shortage of rain this year.     
 
I  need to caution there are toxic  look alsikes which can make your sick. You need to be 100% positive of the variety of mushroom you find and consume.  Play it safe always consult an expert before you eat a wild mushroom you are not familiar.                                                                                                                                         
Chanterelles are a meaty chewy mushroom.  They are not generally eaten raw. Melt butter on medium heat and add sliced chanterelles.  Cook until the liquid is gone.  Pair well with seafood, chicken, pork or beef. 
  
Chanterelles will reappear in the same places year after year if carefully harvested so as not to disturb the ground in which the mycelium (the vegetative part of the mushroom) grows. Some years there will grow more mushrooms, and  some years less.         
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
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