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Oct 2, 2010 12:33 PM

Who sells wild mushrooms in the West end?

My parents went out on a little forage yesterday in Durham Region and came home with a small amount of mushrooms. Not sure what they're called in English, possibly Slippery Jacks. My dad dropped off a little container for me to taste this afternoon (cooked up with some bacon and a bit of heavy cream), and now I'm dying for a wild mushroom feast. Any kind will do, but porcini would be my number 1 pick.

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  1. not sure where in the west end you mean but you can try here
    they usually have a varied selection of wild mushrooms.

    1. The only time that I have ever seen fresh Porcini in Toronto was when mcewen first opened.
      They do not bring them in any longer, even though I inquired about them many times.
      Told me that they were just too expensive.
      Kind of ridiculous considering what they charge for everything else in fresh Produce.
      They are a favorite of mine.
      Even out of season in Italy and France, they are available and not horribly expensive imported from Spain
      I settle for Shitake which are widely available and much cheaper at any Large Chinese Grocery Market.
      You will pay a fraction of what you would pay at Cheese Boutique or other Specialty Stores.

      1 Reply
      1. re: erly

        Ko's on Roncesvalles usually carries an assortment of wild mushrooms but I've never seen fresh porcini. They do have dehydrated packs though. Otherwise I've seen fresh lobster shrooms, hen of the woods and a few others.

      2. Yup. Cheese Boutique had quite a selection, including porcini's. Holy mama though! $14.90/100 grams. That's like over $60/lb! Don't need a mushroom feast THAT bad.

        Cheese Boutique
        45 Ripley Ave, Toronto, ON M6S, CA

        2 Replies
        1. re: Davedigger

          Ha, yep. Sometimes a cremini will do all things considered.

          1. re: jamesm

            Funny thing, I did try a cremini feast on Tuesday and it didn't work for me. Told my parents (in their 80's) about the dissapointment and that's what got them on their trek. I'm a BAD daughter...

        2. Also try Forbes the Forager at Dufferin Grove Organic Market on Thursdays. He may appear in other places, but then that would not be the West End.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Dean Tudor

            I've no time for so-called "foragers." They stray onto friends' land too often and feign indignation when run off. They're often crooks, on both ends of the deal. Any chance Starsky might help?

            2040 Dundas St E, Mississauga, ON L4X, CA

            1. re: Kagemusha

              We used to forage when I was a kid with my parents (i.e. 25 yrs ago) in Durham region. There were "no trespassing" signs, but they were meant for dirt bikers. Mom said in the years after I left home they ran into the owners of a few pieces of land and they were all cool about it, except the one Italian. He wanted them off his porcinis. LOL!! I'm sure now that wild mushrooms are becoming more well known to the mainstream, people know what they've got in a pine forest. :)

              Huh. Starsky's is in my 'rents hood and they frequent it . I'll have them check it out.

              2040 Dundas St E, Mississauga, ON L4X, CA

          2. Question though. Have any of you tried a Slippery Jack? I only know this mushroom as a Kazalekas (in Lithuanian) so I'm not sure this is what I had. I hated it as a kid because of it's kinda slimy texture, but saweet home jesus, I loved it this afternoon. Amazing what a few decades do to your tastebuds.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Davedigger

              There is a mushroom vendor at the North market at St. Lawrence who carries all kinds of mushrooms, oops, I see now you are looking for in the W end. Ko on roncesvalles has some mushrooms, and Benna's, also on roncesvalles, carries dried porcini's at a very good price. I have only had fresh porcini's once, but from that experience, I felt that it was better to dry them as the flavour becomes more concentrated.

              1. re: tdh

                Have eaten slippery jacks, but once you've found porcinis there's no going back. Both mushrooms are types of boletus, but the texture of the slippery jack - as you've mentioned - does put some people off. You can peel off the skin, if you want, but it's a bit of work. At any rate, most of these mushrooms are now finished for the season in Ontario. Waiting for the appearance of "pine mushrooms" which are due to begin showing up any day now. These are a type of tricholoma (I know - it sounds like a fatal disease) and they're definitely not for amateurs as they can be difficult to identify precisely. I do know of a woman who picks them for restaurants but I don't know where they might be available for a regular person to buy.