Hunting for mushrooms
Find your basket and mushroom book and put your boots on! Join us on a treasure hunt for chanterelles, porcini mushrooms and hedgehog mushrooms. These are three of our most common edible mushroom varieties and can be found nationwide. All three are tasty and are a great ingredient in many dishes. We assure you that the aroma of freshly fried wild mushrooms is wonderful.
Remember that you must never eat mushrooms or other plants unless you are 100% certain that they are edible and not poisonous. You will find more information about this further down in this article.
Norway’s most popular mushroom to pick is the chanterelle, which is easily recognisable. This yellow mushroom grows in deciduous and coniferous forests. The chanterelle is funnel-shaped and forked folds run almost all the way down its stalk. It has a fruity smell, a spicy taste and is rarely worm-eaten. The chanterelle may be confused with the “false chanterelle”, which is not poisonous, but not edible either.
Chanterelles are delicious in casseroles, soups, creamy or stewed mushrooms or crispy as a topping on a slice of bread.
Even though the chanterelle is popular, most mushroom enthusiasts agree that the porcini is more aromatic and exclusive. The porcini mushroom (also known as the penny bun) is considered one of the best edible mushrooms. Like other bolete mushrooms, the porcini mushroom has tubes extending down from the underside of the cap, like a sponge. It may be confused with other boletes. Although no boletes in Norway are poisonous, not all should be eaten.
The taste of porcini mushrooms is reminiscent of hazelnuts. There are many options when it comes to using porcini mushrooms, including in soups, sauces and or as a pizza topping.
The third tasty edible mushroom variety is hedgehog mushrooms. Pale and reddish-yellow varieties of the mushroom can be found. They smell like orange and are characterised by spikes on the underside of the cap. As the hedgehog mushroom has no double, it’s one of the safest mushrooms to pick. It’s lovely in pasta, preferably combined with tomato and garlic.
Chanterelles, porcini and hedgehog mushrooms are relatively safe mushrooms, as they don’t have poisonous doubles. However, there are also numerous inedible mushrooms and mushrooms that are poisonous. Consequently, it’s important to know which variety of mushroom you have picked. To be on the safe side, it’s a good idea to get someone else check the first few times.
Sopp- og nyttevekstforbundet (The Norwegian Mushroom and edible plant association) has mushroom inspection sites all over the country, throughout the mushroom season. You can take mushrooms to one of these sites and get an expert to check whether they are safe to eat. Check here for an overview of your nearest inspection site (in Norwegian only). You can also download the “Digital Soppkontroll” app, which enables you to upload photos of mushrooms and get experts to answer whether they are edible or not.
You can also contact the Tromsø Soppforening (mushroom association) if you have any questions about mushrooms in the Tromsø region.
Remember: Never eat raw mushrooms. All mushrooms must be heat treated. Throw away all worm-eaten or rotten mushrooms.
If you suspect mushroom poisoning, contact the Norwegian Poisons Information Centre on +47 22 59 13 00 (24 hours). You can read more about poisonous mushrooms in Norway and download a brochure in a choice of 25 languages.
The Norwegian Association for Outdoor Organisations has some good tips for mushroom gatherers (in Norwegian only).
Good luck! Enjoy the delights of autumn!