Your Guide to Finding and Cooking with the Elusive Morel Mushroom
Morel mushrooms, like other mushrooms, belong to the fungi family. They are unique because they usually grow in the wild and are rarely farmed. Therefore, they must be found and gathered.
The Upper Peninsula of Michigan is known to be a haven for the morel mushroom. Boyne City is the home of the annual National Morel Mushroom Festival. This year, the 58th annual MorelFest will be held from May 17-20, 2018.
These mushrooms are almost never consumed raw – they are best cooked and dried out. My husband is allergic to mushrooms, so I never cook with them, but I do miss them. Here are a few of my favorite mushroom recipes:
- Morel Mushroom Bisque – in this recipe I usually only use 1 cup of heavy cream and substitute low-fat milk for the 2nd cup. I also use Brummel and Brown instead of butter. Most of the time I double the recipe.
- Wild Mushroom Sauce – I love this over a medium grilled filet mignon. Great over any protein source with a lot of flavor, especially grilled meat
Here are the main reasons why mushrooms are an important part of a healthy diet:
- Mushrooms are low in calories, carbs and salt
- Fat and cholesterol-free
- High in riboflavin (which is vitamin B2)
- High in fiber
- A good source of pantothenate, copper and niacin (vitamin B3)
- Morel mushrooms contain some protein
- Known to help boost the bodies immune system, which helps fight disease and cancer
- Inhibit tumor growth
- Boost intestinal flora, which improves digestion and gastrointestinal function
- Exert anti-inflammatory properties, while killing viruses and bacteria with a substance called terpenoids
Get The Facts
Remember mushrooms are unique because some are great to consume, but others are actually poisonous and inedible. If you are going on a hike and find some morel mushrooms, please be sure to be aware of which ones are safe. Check out this detailed mushroom guide to learn more.
Share your favorite mushroom recipes in the comments below and be sure to let us know if you locate any across Michigan this spring. Check out our team morel mushroom hunting in Northern Michigan:
Photo Credit: Carly and Art