Take a Hike Day

Posted by – November 17, 2016
Categories: Food & Nutrition
“In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks.”
—John Muir

It’s Take a Hike Day! Here at North Atlantic Books, we can’t think of a better way to celebrate than foraging for wild plants and mushrooms. With the return of rain this coming winter, the season for mushrooms is just beginning. Below we’ve curated a list of edible plants and mushrooms you’ll likely find as you take to trails and explore the wilderness around you.

For more information, check out Wild Edibles by Sergei Boutenko.

 

Burdock

Arctium minus

Family Name: Asteraceae/Aster Family
Harvest: Fall

While Burdock has fallen out of favor in Europe and North America, it is still widely cultivated and enjoyed in many Asian countries. Burdock is a biennial, and the the best time to harvest the root is in the fall of the first year. For a hearty meal, add burdock to any medley of roasted root vegetables.

Wild Rose

Rosa spp.

Family Name: Rosaceae/Rose Family
Harvest: Late fall after frost

While other wild edibles are scarce in fall and winter, rose hips are just beginning to ripen. These bright red fruits are delicious and a perfect wintertime delicacy rich in vitamin C. Collect and dry for teas or process into jam.

Hedgehog Mushrooms

Hydnum repandum and H. umbilicatum

Family Name: Hydnaceae
Harvest: Late fall

Hedgehog mushrooms grow in abundance through late fall. Look for them around hardwoods such as birch and beech. They are easy mushrooms to identify because they have teeth instead of gills on the underside of the cap. Described as a white wine mushroom, hedgehogs are delicious sautéed or they can be dried and stored.

Oyster Mushrooms

Pleurotus ostreatus, P. populinus, and Others

Family Name: Pleurotaceae
Harvest: Fall, up to and through December

You’ll recognize this one from the supermarket shelves, but oyster mushrooms have a wide range across North America and can easily be harvested. Look for them through December growing on sugar maples and other hardwoods like birch and beech. Since oyster mushrooms don’t dry well, enjoy them fresh in sautés or battered and fried.

Tags: Herbalism Sergei Boutenko Wild Edibles

About the Author

Katherine is a California native, though she has spent time as a student in India and as a teacher in Japan. She attended Humboldt State University on the California coast where she earned her degree in religious studies and a minor in botany. Her love of all things books and reading led her to North Atlantic Books where she is currently working as a marketing intern. In her spare time, Katherine enjoys volunteering at her local library and writing about books on her blog.