I went mushroom hunting today with my friend Ben and we found several pounds of chanterelles on the Nestucca River Road not too far from his place. Inspired by a story I heard yesterday by a caller on Think Out Loud I decided to make some mushroom jerky. One of my favorite foods is jerky. The chewier and saltier the better. To get the recipe I Googled "chanterelle jerky" (yes, I used quotes) and Google told me there was no matches! I did find this website that almost gave me a migraine. I'm writing this to enter "chanterelle jerky" into the internet lexicon. And to tell the tale of my experience trying to make it. I'll start before the beginning with this picture below.
While riding to Claudia's the other night to catch the Blazers get blown out by the fucking Lakers I passed this guy on his bike who is getting ready for the new Tron movie. Lot's of people from various porches were yelling at him and cheering him on. The picture doesn't really do his get up justice.
Before Ben and I hit the woods to find the mushrooms he showed me how to put a chicken to sleep. Unfortunately I didn't take a single picture of us in the woods gathering our treasure. We did hear some gunfire, found an elk skull and got really wet.
Here's some yummy shrooms I brought home. We ate some in chanterelle quesadillas and then the rest i'm making into chewy salty sticks.
According the caller on the radio show she cooks her chanterelles in soy sauce with garlic. The best tofu jerky I've ever made was with Veri Veri Teriyaki sauce so I'd thought I'd try that again. Here's a great shot of the shrooms being cooked. Wow!
Next step: I've set the jerky in the dehydrator and ground some black pepper on them. A concern is that all the mushroom flavor will be lost because of the teriyaki sauce. Well... as long as it's chewy and saly. I'll find out in the morning!
I dried the chanterelles for about 24 hours before I called it quits. They never really quite became what I envisioned. After 24 hours they turned into these kind of gelatinous blobs with a sort of slimy texture. My fears of the teriyaki sauce being too strong were founded, and when the mushroom flavor did come through it turned out that the flavor combination wasn't too good, or maybe even it was plain bad. Final verdict: don't follow this recipe! We did head back to the woods and found bags full more of chanterelles. W made chanterelles and leaks and then chanterelle and squash lasagna. Yum! We also walked by The Alarm Clock tree while out hunting. Fun!