Sunday, 10 October 2010


Sit waiting on edge of damson grove for something to stir beyond thin camouflage of nameless weedy stalks.

Nothing stirs. Grow bored.

Take snuff.

More boredom. Listen over and over to words of Blondie's 'Atomic' repeating themselves internally (was playing in grisly supermarket earlier when buying reduced bags (seven pence!) of carrots and parsnips.

More boredom.


Observe rabbits 90 yards away. Take blurry picture of same.

Decide to move to where rabbits are at least visible - knowing that this will scare them away but hopeful that after brief respite in burrow they'd re-emerge.

Move. Check for cow-shit. Lie down on grass. Look along now-deserted fence-line.

Wait. Grow bored again.


Teeter on edge of giving up and going home.

See movement.

Shoot rabbit.

Take - for reasons far from clear - picture of dead rabbit and gun.

Walk towards home across fields.

Find patch of mushrooms on way. Observe faint yellow bruising on cap when touched, smell faint aroma of aniseed, note 'cog-wheel' on membrane under cap. Remember as descriptions of 'Macro Mushrooms' (Agaricus urinascens). Pick same.

Walk home with mushrooms and rabbit (admiring, the while, imagined image of self doing same: bespectacled Ray Mears, horny-handed son of rural life etc., etc....).

Struggle through barbed-wire fence with now-bagged gun, rabbit and mushrooms.


Arrive home. Smoke. Drink coffee. Take artfully arranged picture of dead rabbit and mushrooms (again, for reasons far from clear).

Look long and hard at River Cottage Mushroom book. Note that pale yellow staining is absent from base of stem and persists elsewhere rather than going brown - ruling out therefore possibility of their being poisonous 'Yellow Stainer Mushroom' (Agaricus xanthoderma).

Cook rabbit, carrots, parsnips, mushrooms, etc.

Look long and hard at River Cottage Mushroom book again while cooking.

Smoke. Drink tea.


Lick plate clean.

Worry slightly about mushroom poisoning. Check book again.




  1. Hubert Hubert, you did not lick that plate clean. That's totally a "before" photo!

    But we love you anyway :-) Congrats on your success!

  2. Nice shooting and cooking!

    I'm still too chicken to try foraged mushrooms...


  3. Excellent post HH, curious though about the time scale of mushroom poisoning. Does it allow time to complete witty and enjoyable blog post before full effects are felt? :-)
    Oh and contrary to Holly's view, I believe in your licked clean plate.
    Best regards,

  4. Holly,

    When I lick something, it stays licked.


    I'm too chicken to eat them too - and I eat them. Not such a great combination, I'm now thinking...


    The less nasty ones make you sick pretty much immediately. The really bad boys give you a few days to go 'Phew!' then you just plain die. Kinda worrying, really. I bought Roger 'Analytic Mushroom King' Phillip's book this morning - thinking that there's really no good reason to muck about with this kind of thing...


  5. Excellent post yet again!! Not overly sure what those strange weeds could be, maybe picking a few and baking with them may be the next step lol!!

    Keep up the foraging, mushrooms looked really tasty, if only the internet could give us smellivision!!

  6. my vine-ripened tomatoes and zucchinis, not to mention the fruitless pumpkin and watermelon vines whose flowers you devoured. I can no longer bear your rude interruptions.metal privacy fence