A little while ago I was in Seattle for a gig. FYI, I luvvvvvv Seattle! I was doing morning press at my fave radio station… The Jet 95.7!!!!!! #SHOUTOUT. So, I’m talking about the time I came to Seattle for a football game on a Halloween one year and I went to Pikes Market and there were tons of wild Chanterelle mushrooms for like maybe 7 dollars a pound!!! So I bought 5 pounds of fresh mushrooms and took them home with me to LA. I was in heaven…Mushroom omelets for breakfast, Mushroom salads for lunch, mushroom pasta for dinner…#Awesome. Anyway, I mentioned on air that I had never gone wild mushroom hunting in my life, so I did something I would never do in million years. The DJ put out a call to anyone who would take me mushroom hunting. The lines lit up (mostly creepy, stalker types) finally my mushroom angel called! Ms. Rachel Su (que music).
She left her number and I called her. First of all I had to make sure she wasn’t crazy…check. She wasn’t in a flesh eating, mushroom hunting, devil cult…check, check, check. We were good to go. After many texts and phone calls, Rachel told me she needed to call in reinforcements as this trip was too much for her handle solo. Rachel brought her mushroom Yoda Mr. Jaxon Ravens, AKA the mushroom PIMP. Rachel and her crew picked me up at my hotel the next morning at 7 AM, now since I first met Rachel, the temperature in Seattle plummeted to like 37 degrees in town, colder in the woods. this is very bad news for mushroom hunters. I get in the car and Jaxon is driving. We intro ourselves and I find out they are all DAG fans which for me wasn’t good as I thought I was going to be kidnapped. Wrong! These people were so cool! We headed out to the Cascade foothills about an hour outside of Seattle.
It was very cold, but Jaxon assured me there would some mushrooms to find. Of course he mentioned several times that had I only come the week before they found mushrooms by the truck load.
This ladies and gentlemen is Jaxon the great! I’m holding my first wild lobster mushroom! As you can see it was quite frozen. Rachel, her boyfriend Chris, Jaxon myself and several of Rachel’s friends hunted mushrooms for a few hours.
The whole crew!
We found golden chanterelles, lobster, hedgehog, and bears head tooth. Not bad for a first timer. I had an incredible day with total strangers, doing something I have never done before in my life in the middle of nowhere! I bid my new stalkers….I mean friends farewell and carted my bounty home with me the next day. Now I did lose a few as I had to keep my mushrooms in my hotel room in a paper bag. some thawed and went bad but I was able to salvage enough chanterelles to make my very first risotto. I made a wild mushroom risotto with short grain sticky rice I had in the house. I know this not traditional but thats all I had and after some research I figured it may work and besides at that point my mushrooms were fading. Full disclosure, I did supplement my wild caught mushrooms with some wild bought mushrooms I copped at Pikes Market to complete my recipe. I took my recipe from “La Cucina” a great cook book.
Wild Mushroom Risotto
- 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion minced
- 1 lb golden wild chanterelle mushrooms
- 2 cups Aborio rice
- (I substituted CA organic short grain, sweet rice)
- 1/2 cup Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 5 cups of chicken broth
- 1/4 cup of dry Vermouth
I sauted the onion in the butter and then I added the mushrooms and the vermouth. Some recipes call for a dry white wine but the Vermouth added a flavor that was sooooo good. I stirred until the Vermouth was evaporated. I then added the rice and browned it and added the stock, 1/2 a cup at a time stirring with a wooden spoon until the stock was absorbed. After about 20 minutes checked my rice. It was al dente.
I served my risotto with some Salmon, and Dinosaur kale I picked from my garden.
It was grub time at DAG’s joint! Thank you Rachel, and Jaxon the great for an amazing adventure.