I first noticed these ubiquitous mushrooms last spring when searching for morels with my good friends Stephanie and Mike. The one I brought home last year was past prime, but gave me a taste (literally) of what they had to offer.
During my walk yesterday, I found scads of them, from tiny buds to HUGE specimens, like this (a generous "saddle" indeed!):
|That's Mike. Outdoorsman-extraordinaire.|
|And that's the bottom Dryad's Saddle of the two Mike was posing with. Looks more like a tractor seat to me! Note: don't bother harvesting if they're this large. My mistake.|
Though I did harvest this large mushroom, I was only able to use the outside 3" of it. Those below, also large, were equally disappointing. They're simply too tough when they're large.
|Here are some little sweethearts! Small and fresh.|
When they're small and tender, Dryad's saddles are good utility mushrooms. I follow Steve Brill's (literal) rule of thumb: If you can dig into the flesh with your thumbnail, it's good to harvest. I also follow his method of preparation. I marinated mine for 24 hours, and had a lovely dinner tonight. Thanks, Steve!
|Mikey with morels.|