I’ve discovered yet another fabulous food growing locally here in St. John’s – chanterelle mushrooms. They’re in all the local restaurants, they taste amazing, but I’d never tried picking or cooking them myself.
Enter my friend Jess. This girl is like a bloodhound when it comes to finding food in the wild; she’s the one I went berry picking with a few weeks ago. She’d found some chanterelles on her own and offered to go foraging with me to show me where she found them and teach me how to look for them on my own. Unfortunately it was a particularly yucky day – hot, muggy, and overcast – and we were soaked from the water droplets on the trees and tall grass we were walking through. But we did find a LOT of wild chanterelles – plenty for both of us – and we had a really fun time chatting away about everything and nothing.
Chanterelles are a bit of a pain in the butt to clean, but it’s so worth it (don’t soak them in water – give them a quick dip in cold water, dry them thoroughly right away, and I used a soft toothbrush to remove any difficult bits of dirt). That night Tyler and I made a delicious ravioli entirely from scratch: homemade dough filled with minced chanterelles, prosciutto, and shallots cooked in a little olive oil and butter and mixed with ricotta and a bit of goat cheese. We topped it off with some fresh pesto made using basil from our hydroponic garden. It was as amazing as it sounds (and looks!) Needless to say I am definitely a new fan of picking and cooking with local chanterelles and hopefully can harvest a bit more before the season is over.