Thursday, May 19, 2011

Quick! Pine Mushrooms

A short walk along the hills surrounding the Yarra River has provided another seasonal gift.
Pine mushrooms or Lactaria deliciosa  are found beneath - well pine trees. Thankfully they are found commonly under the most common pine tree - Pinus radiata. This is the pine most commonly used in plantations in Southern Australia.  They can be seen in the photo above center left and dark green.

Pine Mushroom.
A small reminder that it was pine mushroom season was a couple of old fellas fossicking around some pines on the Warby hwy about 2 weeks ago.
Pine mushrooms are upwardly concave when mature, pale orange to pink on top and bright orange when cut open. The gills may be stained with bluish bruises, especially if they are older specimens.

I think the old fellas were right on time because many of the fruit i saw were past it but i still gathered quite a few kilos of reasonable mushrooms in a very short time.

notice bluish staining on gills
Note that i am not writing a guide to the identification of these mushrooms. Go for a walk with someone who knows these critters or take a specimen to someone who knows what they are.

They cook up well and keep their shape better than a field mushroom. Stephanie Alexander even has some resipes in the "Cooks companion". The flavour is not as intense as a ripe field mushroom and they are very good done with garlic and butter!
I couldn't resist preserving some under oil


  1. Hi Chris, I am keen to pick these mushrooms. Was just looking for it. Are you able to advise me exactly where?

  2. Dear Anonymous - you want be to give away my best fishing spots?? My tip is that i found them at several spots along the Warburton hwy - any good sized patch of pines should have them but even scattered pines sometimes do. The older the pines the better i think. Good luck!

  3. Thank you. I thought that this will probably be your response but no harm asking, right? I really appreciate your tip. Thank you. : )

    BTW, do you think that at 15 deg max this week, there will still be mushrooms for picking?

    BTW, did you get to see any Slippery Jacks? Have you tried them?

  4. Now slippery Jacks?? There may have been but i am takling one mushroom at a time. I haven't tried them as yet.
    The pine mushrooms tend to stick around for a long time so should still be around despite the recent cold.

  5. Thank you, Chris! This is my first time real wild mushroom picking. Hope I will pick the right ones. From what I have read so far, I have the impression that this type is pretty easy to identify. Well, may the grace of God be with me. : ) Enjoy your mushrooms!

  6. Hi Chris, I did find some pine mushrooms on Sat when I went picking. But unfortunately, they were small ones about 2 inches in diameter max and very few ( I only picked about 6). Guess the season is at the tail end? But I did find one slippery jack. : ) Wish there are more to pick. BTW, are the pine mushrooms usually among the dense pine trees or in grassy areas? I found all of mine in grassy areas near pine trees where there is sunlight.