Mushroom vendor joins Park City Farmers’ Market
July 15, 2008
Do you know the mushroom man?
Robert Angelilly has his porcini, morel and hen-of-wood edible mushrooms flown in from Oregon each week to sell at the Park City Farmers’ Market Wednesdays.
Porcinis go for $20 a pound and can be sautéed, grilled, sliced, marinated in olive oil and crumbled over bread to make appetizers. Mushrooms can also be blanched, mixed into salads and garnished on burgers.
In the next few weeks, morels will start sprouting in the Uinta Mountains and mushroom enthusiasts such as Angelilly and Volker Ritzinger will traipse through steep terrain to find the oysters of the earth.
Angelilly warned inexperienced pickers to stay away from shrooms. "Unless you’re educated, don’t pick and eat something," he said.
Angelilly is based out of Salt Lake City and started attending the farmers’ market in Park City two weeks ago.
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In that time, his mushrooms have attracted plenty of attention, and some raised eyebrows. Hen-of-the-wood mushrooms look like oblong loofah sponges with a dingy white color. They spill from Angelilly’s wicker baskets as if carried up from the deep.
The morels at his table come from the Morchellaceae family and grow in North America, South America, Europe, Russia, China, Turkey and India, according to mushroom enthusiasts.
They are one of the most popular mushroom delicacies served in restaurants across the world.
Morels grow in the spring and summer under cottonwood trees, near creeks, and in forests that have burned the previous year, according to some mushroom Web sites.
That makes the Uintas a breeding ground for the peanut-shaped fungi.
Angelilly’s stock may look like that of an apothecary, but he insists that his mushrooms are for cooking, not for taking psychedelic trips on broomsticks.
"It takes a while to educate people," he said. "People are so used to the kind of mushrooms you buy at the grocery store, but once you try wild mushrooms you don’t want to go back to Portobellos. They’re addicting."