Holy Giant Puffballs!!! 

Why is it important to know what is edible in your area? Well… why not just learn… whether it is important to you or not is it an opportunity for another resource. It never hurts to have basic knowledge of your surroundings and the primative technique of foraging. Unlike most people nowadays, if I find something growing outside, I immediately question if it is edible and how can I cook it! So the research starts and once I know what I have… I cook it right up! This year I’ve enjoyed all the natural resources around our Virginia Farm… from persimmons to wild cherry trees, I’ve expanded our palette of foraging treasures and continue to learn! Exactly a year ago I came across these giant puffball mushrooms that were growing in the woods, but didn’t cook them right away. I learned that they are Calvatia gigantea (common synonym Langermannia gigantea). These Giant Puffballs, can grow to 80cm diameter and weigh several kilograms. They are easy to spot, because they are pure white! So today I went to the last location of where they were and sure enough I found some growing. I only took two small ones, because you always want to leave more of what you are taking to ensure that they will come back next year! I believe this is a very important lesson to live by in all aspects of life. Now that I have these giant Puffballs, that resemble the volleyball named Wilson from “Cast Away,” I head home to cook them up! There are many different ways to cook them, but I decided to grill them with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper! After I washed them, I cut them into steaks and seasoned them up and threw them on the grill. The texture was similar to Tofu and they definitely smelt like mushrooms. After flipping a them couple times I sliced the mushroom steak up and served it with a fresh picked salad and London Broil (that we raised on our farm)! I was really impressed with the taste and pleased to know these are just growing out in the wild! I recommend that you learn what is growing around your area and the art of foraging, but be safe and do your research! 


Kaylee Richardson 

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