Wild-harvested Yellowfoot Chanterelle Mushrooms (Craterellus tubaeformis) are smaller and more fragile than their cousin, “Pacific Golden Chanterelle”. These are gathered by Smith River Wildcrafting (Smith River, CA) in the winter months here along the “Wild Rivers Coast” of Curry and Del Norte Counties.
Sometimes known as “poor man’s chanterelles” Yellowfeet are very prolific in a wet year. They’re nicknamed “Winter Chanterelle” because their gills are blunt, uneven, and run down the stem (same as a Pacific Golden Chanterelle), and the flavor is slightly reminiscent to Pacific Golden Chanterelles. Yellowfeet really like wet, swampy areas near moisture and decaying wood, moss, etc.
Note: do NOT wash your mushrooms until just before using them! (If you wash them too early, they won’t keep as long). I don’t wash mine at all, but instead brush them clean with a soft-bristle brush (a pastry brush works well, as does a large makeup brush) – blowing on them works just as well. Store your mushrooms in the refrigerator, preferably in a covered container (but NOT a plastic bag; a rubbermaid container works well). They will keep for a week or so quite nicely.
There are a number of great recipes out there – here is an easy one to try: Winter Chanterelle Broth with Pasta.