FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - As the monsoon season continues in northern Arizona, there are still plenty of opportunities to hunt for mushrooms.
If you're new to wild mushroom hunting, there are a few things you should look out for.
“A good rule of thumb is anything that is pure white stay away from. I would try, especially if you're new to the hobby, I would stick to things that are easily recognizable like the lobster mushroom, " said Kristin Haskins, director of research at the Arboretum of Flagstaff.
Haskins also advises to have an experienced person look at what you find before you eat it.
"The best way is to go with someone who knows what they’re hunting," Gred Klause, a chef at the Aspen Valley Golf Club in Flagstaff. "What I suggest is take pictures of the mushrooms on the top and the bottom and bring it to somebody who actually has hunted them before."
Klause also says to stay away from any mushrooms that have gills on the bottom.
"It's like a treasure hunt," said Klause. "Anything with gills stay away from, typically."
Klause says generally the edible mushrooms have a spongy bottom but that is not always the case. There are hundreds of varieties and only a few of them are edible.
"Be very careful, pick what you know and don't put anything in your basket that you're not sure of," said Klause.
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