The limestone slopes of central Turkey’s mountains were discoloured and worn smooth by eons of goats’ hooves and the shoes of herders.

The trail wound its way among the spires before plunging into the depths of a mature pine forest. A shady track ran between the grand tree trunks. Many herders were among their flocks, wandering the grassy slopes. With little more than a small cloth bag slung over one shoulder they followed closely behind their grazing animals, occasionally moving the animals along.

The herders also grazed the surrounding slopes themselves, reaching for mushrooms among the pine needles. Mostly, they would be cooked with a sparse amount of basic accompanying ingredients and rudimentary utensils, but this is often the nature of cooking with mushrooms; their subtle earthy flavours only need to be enhanced by the simplest of cooking methods and additional ingredients.

As a very versatile food to add variety to an active diet, they also keep for months and weigh very little when dried. Mushrooms make a perfect food source for bushwalking.

Curried Mushrooms

Serves 2

This is a simple meal that is extremely easy to prepare both at home and in the field. It tastes great, weighs next to nothing and all ingredients are easily available.


Dried field mushrooms (If whole break into bite size pieces)
2-3 spring onions finely chopped.
1 clove of garlic
2 tsp curry powder (or to taste)
½ teaspoon garam masala
½ teaspoon fresh ginger (finely chopped)
1 spoon lemon juice (optional)
½ cup coconut milk powder
Salt to taste

At home:

Place all ingredients except mushrooms and lemon juice into a plastic bag.

In the field:

Place one cup of water into a pan, add mushrooms and bring to boil. Let simmer until mushrooms have re-hydrated. This should only take a few minutes. Add all other ingredients and simmer until sauce has thickened. Serve over rice.