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A chanterelle foray in Thailand

September 19, 2010

Today, the 18th of September, our German ‘Tropical Garden School‘ pupil Anja, our Golden Retriever Ruben and I went on a mushroom foray a few hundred meters from Dokmai Garden. We have a special site with Dipterocarpus tuberculatus trees, which is the host tree of an edible chanterelle. I guess we have Cantharellus minor here, slightly smaller than the common Cantharellus cibarius, but equally delicious and perhaps even more intense in its fragrance. Bringing Ruben is fun for him, and allowing him walking in front of us makes us safe from cobras (they would spit at him first). To my satisfaction, Ruben got quite excited when he reached the area, as that is also a site for Thai truffles, which we search for in May-June. We found some older, inedible specimens of Thai truffles, but today we focused on chanterelles. Our site is fairly big, maybe 30 meters in diameter, and although burnt annually, the mushroom mycelium thrives as the heat from the fire is not very intense. Most mushrooms were small, but we got enough for three large mushroom toasts and for making a breadfruit dish (see tomorrow’s blog). The Thai name for chanterelle is ‘Hed Kamin’, i.e. ‘turmeric mushroom’, alluding to the yellow colour. If you have a stand of trees of the Dipterocarpaceae family, this is the time to check for the gold of the forest. We propose you cook the chanterelles in the western way, i.e. fry them in a frying pan with butter and salt, using the lowest heat, until the water is gone. Then pour chanterelles generously on a toast with butter, serve with a crispy dry white wine, such as Chilean Santa Alicia Chardonnay.

Enjoying chanterelles is a serious moment in life, it may not come back until next year. Stop all distractions such as dripping water or humming engines, turn off cell phones and enjoy life!

Eric Danell & Anja Rohde

 

Thai chanterelles (Cantharellus minor), washed and ready for the frying pan.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Yet another chanterelle-obsessed, partially muangified Swede permalink
    September 18, 2012 12:31 PM

    A Frenchman taught me that adding a single squashed, finely chopped clove of garlic to the frying pan heightens the taste experience even more (it accentuates the nutty taste) – maybe worth a shot next time? Many thanks for the info, I am stoked to know that chanterelles are available locally.

    Are Dipterocarpus tuberculatus fairly easy to find, or would it be a wild goose chase to head out into the forest randomly to look for them?

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