To Die For…Literally?
Early in our relationship, Bill took me morel hunting at his folks’ farm southeast of Topeka. This City Girl showed up in white shorts, a stretchy little tee shirt and a brand new pair of dressy tennis shoes. The timber wildlife would be absolutely dazzled! Due to my inappropriate morel-hunting attire, I didn’t venture into any dense timber; I stayed mostly along the edge of the trees. But I did get my dressy tennies muddy crossing a creek. A misstep off a rock took care of both the newness and the dressiness.
We found a few morels and went back to Bill’s farm. He cooked them for supper, along with fresh crappie and asparagus. While he was cooking, I had a horrifying thought: Didn’t people die from eating poisonous mushrooms gathered out in the timber? My recollection was that some were okay but others were lethal and some people didn’t recognize the difference until it was too late. Bill seemed knowledgeable about what to look for; he had hunted and eaten morels previously. And they smelled so good, sautéing in butter and a few herbs. How could they possibly kill me?
Bill filled the plates and we sat down to eat. I poked at a morel with my fork, then apprehensively stabbed and put it my mouth. Ummmm—to die for…literally? I swallowed, then sampled the crappie and asparagus. More ummmm’s. Soon, my plate was empty and I was still alive—no excruciating stomach cramps and no barfing up my socks. So far, so good!
When I went to bed that night my last thought was, “Will I wake up in the morning?”
I did, and I've been eating morels ever since!