woodlandcravings woodlandcravings

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Scott Stimpson Jr.  Wild Foods Florida🔄Oregon 📸Photographer🏞 📚Storyteller🌈 🍄Fungi & Plants 🌱 🌴Outdoor Adventures🌳 🍇Sommelier in Training🍷 🌴Foraging & Permaculture☀️

Today
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Today, this Woman, my Grandmother, my Nona, passed after 85 years of life. She is the reason I know how to cook today.
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At a very young age I learned to peel potatoes and blanch tomatoes. Times in the kitchen were lessons learned at her side as a child. Sunday Sauce was a tradition and knowing how to make our family’s marinara was important.
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Over the last four days I was with her, my mother, sister and aunt. Spending the last of her days together. This was the first time I’ve ever experienced the process of death. It’s slow and not nearly as easy as I expected. My grandma unfortunately didn’t have an easy way out. The wisdom and emotion I gathered from this experience has been unlike anything I’ve ever been through and I am so very thankful I was able to spend her last days, hours, and breathes together.
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Grandma, Matilda Pizzella, I Love You so much! Thank you for everything you have taught me over the years. I am so happy you are at Peace now. 💕

🐉Ever kiss a dragon before? 🐲
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🥰 Hehe. Okay. Let’s y’all bent trees.
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If you ever see one of these, heighten your senses, look around, and pay attention to all details. A sign sometimes left behind by our indigenous ancestors. It could be resources, it could be an old camp, or it could be danger. These kind of bent trees have been found all across the globe and are, a lot of the time, signals.
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Yes there are some natural occurrences of bent trees, BUT there is more likelihood that it was done by a human.
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And I absolutely love stumbling across them! 💚

My friends property in Tennessee was full of beautiful surprises.

There was an abundance of coral mushrooms in Tennessee as well as multiple species. Edibility varies with them too. Personally I didn’t experiment with consuming any since I didn’t have a proper key to ID these while I was out there.
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I’m going to say they’re probably going to fit into the genus Ramaria.
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Oh! And there were some beautiful lavender colored ones too that I didn’t get photos of unfortunately. I was too consumed harvesting black trumpets at that time. 😅

When I first stumbled on these mushrooms I thought that maybe they were either a Cortinarius sp. or Blewit (Clitocybe nuda). After further research and photos from @lulannah, I’ve come to believe that they are indeed Laccaria ochropurpurea, which is a known edible species as well. Yay! Another newly discovered foraged fungus for me!
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Unfortunately since I had much research to do before finding the proper ID, I did not get to taste these beauties.
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Next time I’ll know! 💜
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P.S. - The Cortinarius genus is a large one and has a few toxic species, some which are deadly. So as always, again and again, ALWAYS be 💯% positive with your identification of any wild species before consuming.

While we are on the topic of crawling critters. How about this Black and Yellow Millipede (Apheloria virginiensis)!?
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Unlike their venomous centipede relatives, millipedes in fact have no venomous bite or sting. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t poisonous if eaten. Think of their colors as a warning sign.
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Beautiful to look at though! Tennessee has many surprises!

Look at this fire mander! Or maybe it’s a Charmander!? Doesn’t matter! I just can’t get over its vibrance and it was hanging out with some mushrooms!
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This Northern Red Salamander (Pseudotriton ruber ruber) is an endemic species to the Eastern United States. Endemic means that it is only naturally found in that area, and no where else! It was my first time even seeing species before and I was ecstatic!

🌿I sure would like to find myself a nice mossy patch to lay on this Monday morning.🌿
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🌿Hope y’all had a nice weekend with your friends and families!🌿

The only kind of Turkey I really felt like seeing today. 🦃
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It kinda even looks like one!

T-Day
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When it comes to the holidays, I’m just never really excited about them. When you educate yourself to know the root of these “holidays” they seem less and less attractive every year. Another thing that I never really look forward to is all the meat that is traditionally made for the meals. The farmed turkey or the ham. . .(And no I’m not vegan or vegetarian, for those who don’t know this yet.)
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Something I do look forward to is all the autumn colors! The produce that is being grown (like these squash) and the fungi that can be found in the forests.
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Oh and yes there is family. . . but some of us don’t have them the way that is the expected standard. These “holidays” can be a time of loneliness for many.
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So remember to celebrate each and every day with good food surrounding yourself with those who mean the most to you. Not just on these allocated days that are forcibly said to be important.
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Be safe out there if you’re having to drive around in the madness of a city. And don’t drink and drive.
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With warmth and love,
Scott & Puka
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I wasn’t going to post this photos but with so many people asking how big the Lion’s Mane Mushroom was, I figured I would show it off. And it was at the perfect height to take a melfie together! Yes I said Melfie! 🤣
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“But first, lemme take a selfie.”🎶

The most spectacular mushroom of them all! I am so in love with Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus)!
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These mushrooms, fungi, floofs of poofs, icicles of epiphytes, scallops of trees, are one of my all time favorite edibles! Yes I said scallops! Think of it this way, when you cook these fungal pom-poms try not to EVER over season them, treat it like you would lobster and/or scallops (butter : or in my case vegan butter). The texture is on point with those kinds of seafood.
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All the foodie stuff aside, let’s talk medicine. These mushrooms are also well known for their benefits in neurogenesis. Cooking and eating them will not provide you much of those medicinal properties though. The best way to maximize on that is to use a double extraction process to make a tincture.
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What’s your favorite mushroom of all time and why?
🦁RAWR🦁

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