Saturday, 17 May 2014


The kids went on a bit of an explore while we were at the Eco Inn, and found lots of Fungi.  The first one was the Fly Agaric, classic fairy-tale toadstool.  It is famous for being poisonous, but apparently you can eat them if you boil them up in lots of water for about 15 mins, to wash the toxins out.  We won't be trying it, although that's useful to know if we're ever lost and starving in a pine forest somewhere (unlikely...)

We couldn't identify the others, because we didn't have our fungi book handy.  There were some that looked like puffballs,

And some other wee ones

and a big slimy one

Taranaki is a great place for finding fungi, having a mild and damp climate.  We have birds-nest fungi in the front garden, bracket fungi on the cherry tree out the back and sometimes field mushrooms in the lawn.  There is also wood-ear fungi in the bush by the house.  It used to be a major export of Taranaki, so much so that it was nicknamed "Taranaki wool", and is used in Chinese cooking.  Maybe we should try it before we leave.  I used to grow Oyster mushrooms from a kit.  They were pretty yummy but unfortunately we went on holiday just before the main flush and the friends we asked to babysit them had to eat most of them.  Hopefully we'll be able to have another go at that sometime.

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