Foraging, fungi and the fear that followed

Last year, my friend Emma and I went on an utterly unsuccessful mushroom foray on Wimbledon Common. This weekend she came to visit me in my new Somerset home and look what we found!

foraged mushrooms

foraged penny bun mushrooms or ceps

Now, it is a little known fact that my first ever published feature as a keen young journalist was on the subject of wild mushrooms. A slightly dangerous subject for a completely unqualified English graduate you might think, but on the plus side, I was dedicated enough back then to actually do some proper research and ended up gleaning some basic mycological knowledge in the process. So when I saw those little brown domes poking out amongst the fallen beech leaves, I was 95% confident I had discovered the great delicacy that is the Penny Bun, also known as ‘ceps’ en Français.

Despite being faced with deep suspicion, after a quick google and creating an insurance policy on instagram I decided to brave it. I call it ‘Cep Surprise’…

wild foraged mushrooms on toast

Knock me down with a fungus, they were blooming delicious. Ok, I have to admit that I spent the rest of the afternoon slightly worried, but can confidently report I am still alive and well.

I reckon I’m on a bit of a roll with this foraging lark… look what I discovered walking the dog today:

field mushroom growing

puffball mushrooms

freshly picked field mushroom

{all Decorator’s Notebook on Instagram}

More mushrooms – of varying deliciousness perhaps – but I’m determined to give them a go. Puffball surprise anyone???

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