The other day as I was taking my dog out to do her thing, I decided to take a closer look at the dead tree next to our building that the developer has, inexplicably, decided to leave for us to deal with.
Looking more closely at its trunk, I noticed some white fungus. Familiar looking white fungus.
Recognize it yet? Maybe a closer look will help:
This picture, of the bunch I ended up picking, shows pretty clearly what I found: oyster mushrooms.
Back when I lived in Vermont I used to forage for mushrooms, but never found oyster mushrooms. And here in my inner city Chicago neighborhood, oyster mushrooms were growing on a dead tree in my yard. No one shared my excitement - friends seemed frightened at the promise of a meal focused around my Chicago-foraged mushrooms. I tried to reassure them that there are no poisonous oyster mushroom-lookalikes in North America. Yeah, didn't help. So I ate them by myself, sauteed in olive oil with garlic, red chilies, and thyme. They were delicious. And no, I experienced no gastric distress. Or death.