A month visit to Europe on last a couple months ago. It was in September in the spring season. We thought the mushrooms season was finished at this time. Another day that I was not expecting to come. My friend’s husband arranged the adventure to go to a village which they said there is a mushroom. Of course, I definitely joined the adventure. I stayed in the city in Prague, Cerny Most. It took approximately about an hour to go to the woods by car. The woods are located in Mnichovo Hradiste.
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As I can see a lot of people parking their car along the street by the woods but our journey was not the end. There are a lot of places to choose. We chose the woods which not so many people hunt the mushrooms. My friend’s husband introduced his girlfriend to me. This was my first time met Renata. He told me, She is expert with mushrooms. There are many kinds of mushrooms grow in the woods. A lot of them is not able to consume. The Czech Republic as known popular with mushrooming. Mushrooming is also popular in the countries to the northeast of the Czech Republic such as Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Slovakia.
This was the first time in my life to do the wild mushroom picking. Hunting mushroom is a fun activity to relax. I visited the Czech Republic last year and hopefully, I can do this fun adventure during my visit but I didn’t make it because we didn’t have enough time to be prepared before. Renata is a very kind person. She has really good English and explained everything to me correctly while we walked into the woods.
What should we bring while you go for mushrooming?
I am addicted to nature. I love to smell the air of the woods environment. Wild mushroom picking is the best activity for everyone who loves nature. What should you bring while you go for mushrooming? First of all, you will need baskets for the mushroom that you picked and also a knife to clean the mushrooms from the worms.
What will you wear?
You need to wear boots, no sandals or high heels for sure. The woods are mostly wet and slippery. Long pants, Jacket with parachute fabric avoid the rain and dew from the woods humidity.
The Queen of Mushroom
Renata explained about mushrooms to me. I wasn’t expecting to find this mushroom as the season was finished. We walked through the woods. There was nobody hunting the mushroom in this location. Yess, only us. Four of us. The weather is colder than usual but I kept watching my way hopefully to get a big mushroom. We found beautiful mushroom while we walked. This is more interesting than I thought.
This was the first time I’ve seen this kind of mushroom. The appearance is perfectly beautiful. It has red color nearly to orange but unfortunately, it has poisoned. It looks no worms bite the mushrooms and it’s obviously not being able to be consumed. Renata even ignores me to touch this mushroom. While you touch the mushroom, your hands and knife have poisoned. In this situation, you need to clean your hands and knife properly away from contaminated with poison.
There is one kind of mushroom that has a meaty and creamy texture which very popular in the Czech Republic. After 15 minutes walked through the woods, Renata finally found the mushroom which we were looking for. She showed me how looks the mushroom that has popular named among Czech. She also showed me how to picked them properly. The smell is pleasant. This is one that all foragers love to find and each will have their own sites where they find them. I often seem surprised when she say you can find wild, fresh Hribek in the Czech but it is true.
The Bolete Fungi ( Hribek in Czech )
Hribek is the Czech name given to this mushroom, the Italians call it Porcini and They call it Penny Bun in UK. They are easy to identify, they are in the Boletus family, which have a sponge like structure (pores) under the cap rather than gills. Some of the Boletes turn blue if you cut or bruise them, Cep does not turn blue, Its white pores which are rather charecteristic (though they can go yellow when old) and it has a distinctive white net on the stem, especially near the apex. Find them young you should eat them raw, once they get a little bigger then whip out the butter and garlic and enjoy the wonderful flavour sensation that is wild, fresh, Czech Hribek! Look for them in open woodlands that have beech and oak trees as they associate mainly with these.
There are also wild blueberries and raspberries while we walked into the woods. It was surprising me. If you would like to travel to Czech, Please don’t skip this fun adventure. You will love it as much as I do. Please comment on bellow what kind of mushrooms that you know and how was your experience during wild mushroom picking in your country?