Morel (according to Webster) is any of several edible fungi having a conical cap with a highly pitted surface — called also morel mushroom.
Well, for the clueless, this definition sounds like a description of a dunce with bad acne. For those of us who get a hankering this time of year for the wild taste of those clandestine morsels, we drool our way into spring hoping to dine on them once more.
Without stooping down for the mushroom, you cannot put it in your basket. — Russian Proverb. When I was a kid, I found those tricky morels loved to hide beneath leaves and under logs. I seemed to find more than Dad, probably because I was closer to the ground. I learned to stoop down early, and in that bending, I learned that the most delightful morsels could be found, a lesson at an early age. It takes time to seek out what we care about even if it means bending ourselves to find it. That single chance to find a treasure or to pass over it. Observe and be rewarded or look away and miss an opportunity.
Oregon abounds with mushrooms. Yep, we have morels. I have been a bit tentative about hunting them as our forests are dense, and I am not educated in regards to the mushrooms here. So, I am going to take a class on our local fungi, grab a bag and step back in time. I want to learn, so I can take my grandkids hunting the way my dad took me. There are traditions essential to learn as a child. This one was a keeper.
Mushroom time is approaching. Through our forest service I found that my limit is a gallon of them. Indeed if I find a gallon, I will have a backache from bending and probably a stomach ache from the most delicious meal ever. Ah, yes, morels.
Pamela Loxley Drake is a former resident of Darke County and is the author of Neff Road and A Grandparent Voice blog. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.