My family are hardened forest goers. We love nothing more that to don our gear and head to the woods
My teenagers have outgrown it but with my now 5 year old twins I have found the excuse to prolong this pleasure and do it all again.
I love the smell of the forest, that dark dank almost rotting smell.
There’s an eeriness there, a spookiness that excites and ignites the child in me, a wonderment at strange sounds and freshly burrowed ground.
But you see, for all of this to us the forest is a place of bounty. A bounty that changes with each season, a bounty that changes around time and weather, a bounty that is given by each specific tree you stand under or by the fruit it bears.
We can smell, touch and taste our way through the forest.
We have sniffed out Wild Garlic in the spring, enjoying that moment when you catch a whiff and turn to see it there, a gasp as you look and think of all the delightful things to cook once you get this treasure home, a pleasure in seeing your child pick the white flower from where it grew and chew with tasteful delight.
But now is my favourite time, the time for mushrooms. To see the rich golden colour of Chantrelles call at you from the forest floor is like finding gold at the end of the rainbow. To catch that scent, that dark deep mushroom smell, the one that you can almost taste and eat on the air. To snip a bolete and lift it to your nose and dream of the moment when it will hit the pan, you can almost hear the sizzle and know that it’s taste is so special, meaty, heady and good that you will do nothing more than coat it in delicious butter and serve it on toast. It is simplicity at its best. This is what we do and this is what we love