Simple Living off grid has been a big learning curve. Everything that you take for granted in the city, you have to measure and check when off grid.
In the city you turn on the tap with no question that the water will be there, here you do a mental check of the water level in the tank, how much power you are using to run the pump, and if the propane water heater is going to work this time. Its a change you have to adapt to.
One of the fun adventures of being so close to nature has been identifying and picking mushrooms. There are so many varieties and one is a bit nervous to select the poisonous one to add to your delicious pot of stew only to suffer from stomach cramps a few hours later because you picked the wrong ones.
After poring over the mushroom book and using the identifiers, some positive identification resulted in some delicious sampling.
The book I am using as my mushroom bible is “The Ultimate Mushroom Book” by Peter Jordan and Steven Wheeler.
Some of the common ones found are Shaggy Incap, and Boletus, and puffballs. But some new ones that could be clearly identified were Oyster mushrooms, cauliflower fungus, and penny buns.
Here is the oyster mushroom compared to the picture in the book, clearly identified and eaten successfully.
The shaggy inkcaps make delicious mushroom soup, but they must be handled carefully – pick what you use quickly or they turn into an inky mess! They can be dried, but must be dried quickly to stop them from turning into ink.
The cauliflower fungus was easily identified, and was a delightful surprisingly nutty flavor when fried in butter.
The trick to mushroom identification and selection is to never, never eat a mushroom you cannot positively identify.
The next step to learn is to identify mushrooms by their spore print. The spore print can help to make a clear identification of the mushrooms.
I would love to have comments if anyone is a mushroom expert, and would like to share their experiences.