Archive | September, 2013

A Sweet tooth for Hedgehog mushrooms

14 Sep

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This is a choice edible mushroom I’ve enjoyed eating for a number of years now though I never seen them as plentiful as I did here today.

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Hydnum repandum is known as the Sweet tooth mushroom in North America and the Hedgehog mushroom in english speaking areas of Europe.

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Some of these young mushrooms were weighing around 6 ozs so the basket was filling quickly, the cap color is very lively looking and really stands out from a good distance.

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This mushroom is very good cooked in butter low and slow in a covered pan for 30 to 40 minutes. I usually remove the soft spike teeth before cooking as they scrape away very easy. The mushrooms will give of their liquids in around the 15 minute mark and then they will absorb them again in the last few minutes.

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By far my best collection of Hydnum repandum ever, as you can see a few Lobster mushrooms and Russulas along with at the back between the baskets a nice 5 lb Chaga mushroom horn which I’ll do a post on later. ciao

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Sheepish grin

8 Sep

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Visiting a place which is new to me today, lots of caves in the area with plenty of limestone and gypsum outcrops. Should see some Chanterelle and some other interesting mushrooms.

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Usually I do not see Suillus grevillei till next month though here they are.

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Can’t see any larch trees here either though the larch is I believe Suillus grevillei’s only tree associate.

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This one is a new Russula to me, very robust thick stem and compact heavy cap with a cap and stem color I haven’t noticed on Russulas before.

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The deep black staining on the gills calls for further investigation. I sliced the mushroom down the center and it turned black within a few minutes. This mushroom must be Russula adusta or a very close relative. This is an inedible mushroom.

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More yellow Coral mushrooms which I can’t identify as of yet. We have 3 different types of yellow coral in my area by the looks of things. I’ll have them figured out by next year.

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Ah, I’ve seen some big Sweet tooth mushrooms lately but this is too much.

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On flipping this one over I notice there is too much, as in tiny pores instead of long teeth. This mushroom is either Sheep Polypore or Albatrellus confluens both are edible and I haven’t tried either one yet.

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More of this Albatrellus species mushrooms are on this hillside.

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It is kind of interesting that in Europe Sheep Polypore (Albatrellus ovinus) is considered the best edible, while in North America Albatrellus confluens is viewed as the better edible mushroom as long as it is well cooked. Back in Europe Albatrellus confluens in most of the northern countries is parboiled and then cooked again when it is eaten though few eat it when Albatrellus ovinus is available.

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I won’t know which Albatrellus I have here until I get some in the frying pan and heat it awhile as Albatrellus ovinus’ white flesh turns lemon yellow and Albatrellus confluens white flesh turns an apricot color when cooked. These mushrooms once cooked appear closer to the apricot shade so I suspect these are Albatrellus confluens.

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Since this is my initial try with this mushroom I did take the European advise and parboiled and then fully cooked the mushrooms later in the frying pan, the aroma of the cooking mushrooms was pleasant and the taste was quite good though I only ate a small quantity to be on the safe side. Oh with all the new mushrooms grabbing my attention I didn’t show any of the nice Chanterelle I gathered out there, well sometimes it is interesting to show only the surprises. ciao

Foray it’s Friday

6 Sep

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Starting on the evening of Friday the 27th of September 2013 and ending around noon on Sunday the 29th the Nova Scotia Mycological Society will be holding their annual wild mushroom foray near Berwick NS. Here is the address if you would like more info www.nsmushrooms.org/forays/2013               Judging by soil maps and the forest types in the foray’s surrounding areas this should provide the society with quite a few new species to add to their already impressive list of species in N.S.   Check out their site, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with what you will see there, they offer a great deal and a good opportunity to enjoy and learn on the trails and back at the Identifying tables at the campsite. (Photo above) Dyer’s polypore, Phaeolus schweinitzii

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I did a little (Foray it’s Friday) myself tonight and here are some photos, you’ll see lots of mushrooms similar to these at the NS foray plus many more. One of the first mushrooms I seen on my walk this evening were these Lobster mushrooms.

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This one weighed around 12 ozs

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I walked for an hour through these woods and here are just a few of the ones I photographed in order as I found them, here we see some Pear-shaped Puffballs.

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Next a stranger to me, looks like a very dark capped Amanita, but with  all wild mushroom and especially the Amanitas you are best to not guess. I may dry these to sent away for identification.

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You will need to click on to enlarge this photo, the white mushrooms far off in the distance are the very common Destroying Angel which is another member of the Amanita family which host many of the Maritime provinces most poisonous mushrooms.

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This is one of our most common early fall mushrooms, Cortinarius Armillatus which isn’t very tasty and mistaken identity in the Cort family can be a life threatening experience. This mushroom known as the Bracelet Cort is best left off your edible list.

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More Lobster mushrooms.

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Here is a large coral mushroom, this may be or may not be a variety of Ramaria flava, I’ll dry and send some of this mushroom away for identification.

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Forays are not all about mushrooms, I found this birch tree quite frilling as well.

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Here I see a tree with what appears to be plenty of Chaga mushroom on it about 300 feet away with my car visible a 1,000 feet away in the light green area noticeable near the bottom of the tree trunks. You’ll need to click on this to see anything on this one.

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So the tree did actually have some Chaga on it but only a very small horn so now I’m heading towards the car and see this very large bright capped mushrooms growing on this downed log, don’t know this one, I touched the underside of the cap and my hand was quickly stained with a reddish-brown watery powder, interesting stuff out here.

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Around 400 feet from the car and now I find a nice surprise edibility wise.

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Sweet Tooth or AKA  Hedgehog mushrooms these are the largest ones I gathered this year. As far as wild edible mushrooms go I did very well ending up with around 5 lbs of Lobster and Hedgehog mushrooms.

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Across the street from my car here are a few lbs of Lobster mushrooms and these are the ones you should not gather for food. For every pound of wild mushrooms I gather for food or medicinal use I walk by double that number of pounds of the same species due to them being in areas where they may accumulate toxins. The wild mushrooms you can see from your car while driving are great for indicating a mushroom is available in that area but again leave them there to spread spores and indicate good gathering grounds.

If you have hung around to make it to the end of my Friday night foray, thanks for the company and maybe we will meet again at the NS Mycological Society’s foray in a few weeks. ciao

I sense you’re here

5 Sep

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A squirrel was working up a storm, it seemed it was raining invisible conifer cones, I was stumped under this tree tonight as I could hear and vaguely see a large number of items being dropped from above but couldn’t for awhile spot the conifer cones on the ground once they landed as they seemed to disappear amongst the bunchberries. A squirrel is on my family coat of arms so I suspected the was some kind of ancestral shenanigans perhaps?

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Ah, these green cones travel quick and blend in well, I never knew they harvest the resiny green ones. Click on to checkout the bed of bunchberries on the ground.

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Mystery solved, now a few mushrooms, the attractive but (not recommended as edible) Scaly Vase Chanterelle (Gomphus floccosus).

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A photo from a few years ago of a Scaly Vase Chanterelle

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The Amethyst deceiver (Laccaria amethystina)

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and a mature Hydnellum peckii.

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Here is an older photo of a young Hydnellum peckii, funny how things change, ciao

Back to school Blues, reds and yellows

2 Sep

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School starts for the children this week and it’s also an educational time to be a wild mushroom gatherer in eastern Canada with the cooler nights come a whole new group of wild mushrooms to join up with the summer mushrooms which will also remain for a while longer. The new families to appear have a great number of members and these families include the Cortinarius which has a representative shown above, the Tricholoma and the Hygrophoros along with a few others will make it hard to choose which mushrooms to focus on. Many of the mushrooms in these families are inedible or poisonous and I haven’t spent much time over the years getting to know them as edibles were my main concern though they are very beautiful to see out in the woods and some like the Cortinarius shown above also have interesting aromas with this purple colored mushroom smelling like freshly boiled potatoes. So today I will show some mushrooms I commonly see and will need to send away to finally be able to identify with certainty. Guessing the above mushroom is Cortinarius traganus?

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Now this mushroom looks like what is considered by many to be one of the world’s most common mushrooms Laccaria laccata though these ones in the photo have larger caps and longer stems and I will send these away asking if they are actually Laccaria nobilis?

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Tricholoma are tricky to ID with the many shades of cap color within some species. I’m guessing the yellow mushrooms on the left are Tricholoma subluteum? On the right we have a real common mushroom under mixed forest and conifers which I have never took the time to verify its identity and was surprised it wasn’t easy to find on the net. There are a few possibilities though my guess is Russula sanguinaria?

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I’m a little embarrassed to show this super common mushroom which everybody in the maritime provinces has walked past numerous times. I can’t with certainty tell you the identity of these beautiful little mushrooms though my guess is Hygrocybe miniata?

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Last one, another purple Cort and this one doesn’t have as much brown tones or any potato scent, if its cap wasn’t so smooth I would guess it was the rare Cortinarius violaceus?

I’ll mail these in dried form to my teacher, wish me luck in getting a passing grade on this little test I created for myself. ciao