The Hunt for Mushrooms


As Asturias is a mountainous region, there's the tradition within the culture to search for mushrooms in the forest to preserve for winter. It's also a very good time for chestnuts, walnuts and hazelnuts. While my roommate, her teachers and I were unable to find any mushrooms in the mountains due to the land being too dry for them, we did find a lot of nuts that we collected in our empty baskets instead.

What tradition did I learn about?:

I learned that foraging (walking around and collecting the edible things that nature provides) is more common for teachers who are in the rural and mountainous regions of Asturias. While the city of Oviedo has mountains that put the city in a valley-like area, these mountains are managed by the city and the residents, so there aren't a lot of nut-producing trees.

Going on this trip allowed me to see how locals use these kinds of traditions to stay true to their roots. People jump at just about any excuse to get outdoors and celebrate nature. For Asturians, foraging is a great way to continue being outside in nature and teach the younger generation which nuts to harvest and which mushrooms are edible.