My daughter found some cool mushrooms that look like seashells at Essex park last week, but those aren't worth anything. If you're mushroom hunting, you're looking for morels.

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Many people will head out to the wilderness with the hopes of hitting the jackpot over the next several weeks because these mushrooms are gold here in southeast Minnesota. Area restaurants and stores have been known to pay $20-$40 per pound. If this is your first time hunting them you can check out some tips below.

Morel mushroom season typically starts in late March and goes through May here in southeast Minnesota. They grow best when the daytime temps are in the low-to-mid-60s and nighttime temps hover around 40.

Kim David/TSM

Have you ever wondered why morel mushrooms are so valuable? Allrecipes.com says there are three main reasons, they're extremely difficult to farm, meaning they must be foraged and harvested from where they naturally grow, they have a short growing season, and they're highly perishable. And, untamedfeast.com explains, "Morels are unique with their meaty texture and an earthy and nutty flavour.  Morels are a bit of a rock star in the food world because they're so hard to find, so expensive, and so exotic looking. They are usually reserved for fancy meals with fancy wine and meats."

Where will you find them? Field and Stream article says the best place to look is around the edges of forest areas, and specifically around ash, aspen, elm, and oak trees. Outdoor Life offers 12 tips, including focusing on well-drained areas that receive plenty of rainfall, but aren't flooded. Happy hunting!

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