Stepping into the woods of the Keweenaw Peninsula is like heading to a forager’s grocery. With maitake, chanterelles and chicken of the woods popping up at different times of the year, it’s understandable how Amy Bachhuber and Rohn Sorensen discovered a love for mushrooms that has bloomed into their business, Superior Mycology.
“Superior Mycology grew out of our shared love for mushrooms.” says Bachhuber. “We began cultivating to fill the large gap in the wild foraging season as a result of our long winters.”
While the woods are covered in a blanket of snow, the duo behind Superior Mycology focus on farmed mushrooms. Amy and Rohn started with an oyster variety, which grows relatively quickly and fruits prolifically, and have expanded from there!
Farming mushrooms not only means that the pair’s schedule starts and ends with harvesting mushrooms, but they also make blocks out of sawdust, monitor the incubation room, or move blocks ready for mushrooms into the fruiting area and clear the finished ones. Their process creates a perfect environment for mycelium to fruit and can take 3-12 weeks for the delicious mushrooms to be ready for harvest. Thanks to this farming method, the Keweenaw community can enjoy oyster, chestnut and lion’s mane mushrooms year round, despite the snowy season!
Their new website is a great resource for finding their mushrooms, from their Summer farmers market booths, to restaurants that feature them on the menu, like the Harbor Haus of Copper Harbor and Keweenaw Coffee Works in Calumet. Curious about picking up mushrooms for home cooking? Check the shelves at Keweenaw Food Co-op!
“Many of our customers are new to gourmet mushrooms and once they try a new variety, they want to try more!” says Bachhuber. “We love that people are willing to give something new a try and cook with different mushrooms. It is great when they tell us they enjoyed them and come back for more!”
Bachhuber and Sorensen are looking to expand their website to include their mouthwatering mushroom recipes featured at their farmers market stands, but in the meantime, try their recipe for Oyster Mushroom Stew!
Oyster Mushroom Stew with Potatoes and Kale
- 8 oz oyster mushrooms
- 2T butter
- 2 onions, coarsely chopped
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 medium to large potatoes, cubed
- 1 bunch kale, ribs removed & chopped
- 1 quart chicken or vegetable stock
- 1/4 c white wine (optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste
Tear oyster mushrooms into bite size pieces.
Saute in a dry (no oil!) heavy bottomed pot until the mushrooms sweat and start to brown.
Add 2T butter, onions, celery and garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Sauté until onions are translucent.
Add potatoes, kale, stock and wine. Simmer until potatoes are tender.
Adjust seasonings and serve with crusty bread.
Claire Butler is the Content Strategy Specialist for Taste the Local Difference. Contact her at [email protected]