Morel season has all but ended here in southern Indiana, and it has been a dandy. There may be a few yellow stragglers yet to make their debut, but most have found their way into a refrigerator or have gone to spore. It started slowly, but timely rains and proper temperatures saved the season.
Every fellow ‘shroomer I spoke with found plenty. Even my 3 year old son found a few. My family’s enjoyed the glut to the point of over indulgence, and I’ve had enough to give away to family and friends. With a pound fetching nearly 50 bucks, people are often surprised when I explain I don’t sell them. I did when I was younger, scrambling up steep hillsides in search of black sponge, my eyes filled with dollar signs, the sacred morel nothing more than a commodity.
As I’ve gotten older the notion of selling them feels dishonest. Making a quick buck off Mother Nature seems unsavory, especially with something as unique and treasured as the morel. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I can’t in good conscience profit when I know older folks who love them but can no longer get out to the woods-and they’re just too delicious to sell.
I found six pounds of blacks, 4 pounds of yellows. Not a bad haul. Even after all the gorging and charity, I’ve got fifty-something big yellows soaking in the fridge as I write this. I’ll probably freeze the lot of them, maybe experiment with some new recipes.
Morels freeze well. If you’re a Mushroom Scrooge with a big mess and you don’t want to give any away, don’t fret: you don’t have to eat yourself sick. Flour ’em, fry till about half-cooked, then freeze them individually on a cookie sheet before freezer wrapping. They will be amazing when you remember they’re there next November.