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Top 10 edible wild mushrooms

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Calvert, at least a few of my manuals list Boletus sensibils as poisonous. I've not ever tried it.

Thanks for pointing that out Dave. It was irresponsible to not have mentioned that.

I believe that it's in the group of reddish, blue-staining bolets that cause "stomach upset" in some people. (Along with Boletus subvelutipes, which many people in my local club consume without problem, but I have only tried once, not for lack of finding them).

Truthfully, I found them on a camping trip, and I had only brought one guide with me. It was listed as "three forks" and I happily ate it for breakfast. (note: I had found it twice before, and was sure of my identification). It was only after returning home that I read that it caused problems for some people. It was by and far the most beautiful mushroom I had the honour of finding, slicing and consuming last summer. (which is why its on the list, even though I've only eaten it once...)

I guess for the record (disclaimer) I also included A. fulva on the list, but I of course don't suggest anyone eat Amanita's. On the other hand, A. fulva are very easy to identify, very common some years, and very pleasing to the palate.

Also, I am not recommending parasol's (Leucoagaricus leucothites) either. A lady died from Amantias in my town in 2009, and we suspect she thought she was eating parasol's. The newpapers reported her as being a longtime mushroom "expert", although anybody who picks a dozen Destroying Angels and eats them in one sitting is probably not an "expert"...my five year old son readily identifies any white mushroom as being deadly (better to err on the side of caution).

Better not to eat Lobsters (although I do) because you cannot identify the host mushroom.

Also, I have read that some people have problems with Blewits (I don't), especcially when they are not well cooked.

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Calvert, I ate Leucoagaricus leucothites the summer of 2009. I was spending most of the summer at a friend's house in Montana and she had them growing all over her lawn. I thought they were delicious!

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As for lobsters, as far as I know it has never been documented Hypomyces lactifluorum parasitizing anything poisonous. I usually picks on Lactarius or Russula mushrooms. I think it is safe to eat without worry.

All mushrooms must be thoroughly cooked to be eaten. Especially morels!

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Have you read about someone dying of the cumulative effect of eating Gyromitra esculenta after eating it for many years? Is there proof? Or is it just a Big Brother rumor? I have not heard about such a case. I found only one Gyromitra esculenta in 8 years and it did not look like anything I would choose to eat. If I lived in an area where it is common I might be tempted to try it. But if it did not taste Choice to me I would not continue to eat it. The people who eat it for 40 years must consider it to have an exceptional flavor. My rating of Yellow Morel has fallen from Choice to Good so I do not bother even picking it now. There are plenty Choice mushrooms around which are easier to find.

Here's the best link I could find with a quick search (Michael Beug is a good source) - gyromitra toxicity. He doesn't reference any specific cases, so there may be some hearsay involved, but it's a good starting point. The link has his email address, so maybe you could ask him directly. Many of the other sites I checked, such as Wiki, say that the toxins "may be" cumulative or "may be carcinogenic," so it does may you wonder... But I'm still not planning to experiment upon myself.

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Poisoning due to raw Gyromitra esculenta (false morels) west of the Rockies

(2 cases)

http://www.cjem-online.ca/v9/n2/p127

Also, this from "Thirty-Plus Years of Mushroom Poisoning: Summary of the Approximately 2,000 Reports in the NAMA Case Registry," By Michael W. Beug, Marilyn Shaw, and Kenneth W. Cochran

http://www.namyco.org/images/pdf_files/Poisonings30year.pdf

Table 7

Gyromitrin Poisoning Suspected due to Hydrazines and Morel Poisonings

Species Number Symptoms¹

& Location¹ & Onset²

Gyromitra brunnea ID adult, 2–3 hrs Gastrointestinal distress, sweating

Gyromitra esculenta 24 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(27), anxiety, atrial

AK(2), IA, ID(2), MA, 3 child fi brillation(3), chills(4), cramps, disoriented(6), dreams,

MI(17), QC, WA 1–9(12) hrs fever, fl ushing(2), headache(2) jaundice, kidney

avg 6 hr failure(3), liver damage(9), muscle spasms,

sweating(9), weak(5), methemoglobinemia, kidney

hematurea, sensitive to sound

Gyromitra 8 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(7), chills(2), cramps(3),

gigas/montana 1 child jaundice, muscle spasm(3)

ID(9), MT(2), OR(3) 2–9 hrs

avg 5 hr

Gyromitra spp 22 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(18), ataxic, chills(4),

ID(6), MI(3), MT(5), ) 1 child convulsions, cramps(6) + severe cramps(4),

OR(3 0.3–11 isoriented(4), fever(2), headache(6), hematemesis,

(24) hrs jaundice, liver damage, malaise, salivation,

avg 3.5 hr sweating(4), weakness(4), hot fl ashes(2), light

sensitive, bilirubinemia, numb, neck pain

Helvella spp. CO 1 adult, 2 hrs Nausea, headache, hypotension, fl oating feeling

Morchella angusticeps 2 adults Gastrointestinal upset, nausea burning throat

MI, MT 0.5 hrs

Morchella deliciosa 2 adults Gastrointestinal distress

NC, CO 2.5 & 12 hrs

Morchella elata 9 adults Gastrointestinal distress(6) + 1 severe GI, cramps(2),

BC, MT, OR(3), WA(4) 0.1–3 hrs disoriented(1), fever, nausea, sensitive to sound,

avg 1.5 hr unconscious, weakness(2), eaten raw = immediate

numb mouth and throat

Morchella esculenta 11 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(10) + severe GI(2,raw),

ID, MD, MI(2), MO, NE, child chills(3), cramps(3), disoriented, nausea(2), sweating,

NJ, NY, WA(3) 0.3–4.5 hrs weakness(3), fl atulence, numb hands, sneezing(24 hrs)

avg 2.5 hr

Morchella spp 25 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(26), chills(3) + severe chills,

CA, CO, ID(7), IL, MT(6), 2 child cramps(4), disoriented(5), fever, fl ushing(3),

NM, OH(2), OR(3), WA 0.1–5.5 hrs headache(7), hallucinations, muscle spasms(2),

avg 2.3 hr nausea, salivation, sweating(7), weakness(7), hot

fl ashes, burning throat, bloated

Raw Morchella spp BC 77 adults Gastrointestinal distress(77), bloating(4), cramps(7),

(of 483) fl ushing, sweating, and thirst (all at one banquet)

0.3 hrs

Verpa bohemica 8 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(6), chills, cramps,

CO(3), ID, MT(2), OR 1 child disoriented(2), fever, fl ushing, headache, hypotension,

2–5 hrs malaise(3), nausea, salivation(2), sweating(2), vomiting,

avg 3.3 hr bloated, light-headed, hot fl ashes, dehydrated

1 Number in parentheses is number of times observed.

2 Number in parentheses is one report of unusually long or short onset not included in average.

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And from here: http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/817931-overview

"In 2004, a total of 2,438,644 toxic substance exposures and 1,183 deaths were reported to the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) Toxic Exposure Surveillance System. Mushroom exposures accounted for 8,601 cases and 5 fatalities.1

* In the same 2004 report, known gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 52 exposures and no fatalities. Only 1 fatality was in an unknown mushroom type.1

* Unknown mushroom type makes up the majority of exposures each year, usually accounting for well over 80% of mushroom exposures, but deaths in this group remain remarkably low (0-2 per year since 1996).

* In 2003, known gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 71 exposures and only 1 fatality.2

* In 2002, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 66 exposures and 1 death.3

* In 2001, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 44 exposures and no deaths.4

* In 2000, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 36 exposures and no deaths.5

* In 1999, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 36 exposures but no recognized fatalities.6

* In 1998, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 77 exposures but no deaths.7

* In 1997, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 86 exposures, 3 with major outcomes, but no deaths.8

* In 1996, gyromitrin-containing mushrooms accounted for 62 exposures but no deaths.9

* Another study published in May 2000 used data from the National Center for Health Statistics and found no difference from the AAPCC annual report in numbers of deaths caused by mushroom exposures.10

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Gyromitra esculenta contain some Monomethylhydrazine or some predessor(gyromitrin) that are transform in MMH (by heating or digestion) witch is a class 3 carcinogenic products... it mean it have proven capacity to induce cancer in animal (mainly mice)... but not clear studies on human... most carcinogenic product can do there damage in really small quantity (ways more smaller than those need to induce acute reaction) and the damage of most of those type of products are cumulatives... some of those damages can appear 20-30 years after the exposition... and some individuals factor can influence on the outcome of those damages...

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Poisoning due to raw Gyromitra esculenta (false morels) west of the Rockies

(2 cases)

http://www.cjem-online.ca/v9/n2/p127

Also, this from "Thirty-Plus Years of Mushroom Poisoning: Summary of the Approximately 2,000 Reports in the NAMA Case Registry," By Michael W. Beug, Marilyn Shaw, and Kenneth W. Cochran

http://www.namyco.org/images/pdf_files/Poisonings30year.pdf

Table 7

Gyromitrin Poisoning Suspected due to Hydrazines and Morel Poisonings

Species Number Symptoms¹

& Location¹ & Onset²

Gyromitra brunnea ID adult, 2–3 hrs Gastrointestinal distress, sweating

Gyromitra esculenta 24 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(27), anxiety, atrial

AK(2), IA, ID(2), MA, 3 child fi brillation(3), chills(4), cramps, disoriented(6), dreams,

MI(17), QC, WA 1–9(12) hrs fever, fl ushing(2), headache(2) jaundice, kidney

avg 6 hr failure(3), liver damage(9), muscle spasms,

sweating(9), weak(5), methemoglobinemia, kidney

hematurea, sensitive to sound

Gyromitra 8 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(7), chills(2), cramps(3),

gigas/montana 1 child jaundice, muscle spasm(3)

ID(9), MT(2), OR(3) 2–9 hrs

avg 5 hr

Gyromitra spp 22 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(18), ataxic, chills(4),

ID(6), MI(3), MT(5), ) 1 child convulsions, cramps(6) + severe cramps(4),

OR(3 0.3–11 isoriented(4), fever(2), headache(6), hematemesis,

(24) hrs jaundice, liver damage, malaise, salivation,

avg 3.5 hr sweating(4), weakness(4), hot fl ashes(2), light

sensitive, bilirubinemia, numb, neck pain

Helvella spp. CO 1 adult, 2 hrs Nausea, headache, hypotension, fl oating feeling

Morchella angusticeps 2 adults Gastrointestinal upset, nausea burning throat

MI, MT 0.5 hrs

Morchella deliciosa 2 adults Gastrointestinal distress

NC, CO 2.5 & 12 hrs

Morchella elata 9 adults Gastrointestinal distress(6) + 1 severe GI, cramps(2),

BC, MT, OR(3), WA(4) 0.1–3 hrs disoriented(1), fever, nausea, sensitive to sound,

avg 1.5 hr unconscious, weakness(2), eaten raw = immediate

numb mouth and throat

Morchella esculenta 11 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(10) + severe GI(2,raw),

ID, MD, MI(2), MO, NE, child chills(3), cramps(3), disoriented, nausea(2), sweating,

NJ, NY, WA(3) 0.3–4.5 hrs weakness(3), fl atulence, numb hands, sneezing(24 hrs)

avg 2.5 hr

Morchella spp 25 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(26), chills(3) + severe chills,

CA, CO, ID(7), IL, MT(6), 2 child cramps(4), disoriented(5), fever, fl ushing(3),

NM, OH(2), OR(3), WA 0.1–5.5 hrs headache(7), hallucinations, muscle spasms(2),

avg 2.3 hr nausea, salivation, sweating(7), weakness(7), hot

fl ashes, burning throat, bloated

Raw Morchella spp BC 77 adults Gastrointestinal distress(77), bloating(4), cramps(7),

(of 483) fl ushing, sweating, and thirst (all at one banquet)

0.3 hrs

Verpa bohemica 8 adult+ Gastrointestinal distress(6), chills, cramps,

CO(3), ID, MT(2), OR 1 child disoriented(2), fever, fl ushing, headache, hypotension,

2–5 hrs malaise(3), nausea, salivation(2), sweating(2), vomiting,

avg 3.3 hr bloated, light-headed, hot fl ashes, dehydrated

1 Number in parentheses is number of times observed.

2 Number in parentheses is one report of unusually long or short onset not included in average.

Am I reading this correctly? there seem to be a large number of Morchella spp that cause poisoning even when cooked. I thought they were relatively safe.

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Guest Vlad

How I understand it is that Gyromitra, Helvella and Verpa can cause problems and are best avoided. Morchella are considered safe at this time. This might change at any time :)

I believe that most of these reports are not investigated, just reported. Most of the symptoms like gastrointestinal distress, cramps and hot flashes can be caused by other things beside mushrooms. They are reported only when someone eats a wild mushrooms. Also these “poisonings” might be caused by allergic reactions. Unless the person ate only a particular mushroom and nothing else they should not automatically blame the mushroom for the problem.

I have had gastrointestinal distress, cramps, racing heartbeat and hot flashes in the past week without eating any mushrooms. I suspect a new blood pressure medication that my doctor talked me into trying. Cramps are a normal indicator that a bowl movement is coming up shortly :)

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Morels should be well-cooked, or else the volatile substance which is a sickener may not get cooked out. Also, some people report sensitivity to morels, possibly on account of eating large amounts or maybe eating them frequently over a long time interval. I have taken morel dishes to pot-luck parties with nothing but favorable results.

About 15 years ago I had developed a sensitivity to Lactarius volemus and L. hygrophoroides. Probably on account of eating lots of these mushrooms each week for a few weeks running. A Russian friend of mine suggested that I try them again after abstaining for an extended period of time. I now eat relatively small amounts of these milkies, and not very often.

I have also experienced some difficulty digesting Boletus bicolor. But I'm not sure if this is just on account of having eaten too many --they are very common around here-- or maybe some of what I find is actually B. bicoloroides, a bicolor look-alike that has been reported as a sickener. Waiting for another real good bicolor summer to further study spore size on collections of (alleged) bicolor.

My fater's parents were Polish immigrants. They ate all sorts of Russulas... boiled three times before preparation.

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I just looked up Panther Amanita and they say that the European version is eaten but it sounds like it is consumed by people who want to get high so they are not interested in detoxifying it nor how it tastes. Beside that it is very rare in my area. I never saw one. I am still looking for the dangerous Amanita but have not found it in the 8 years of hunting. I would just like to meet the enemy :rolleyes:

I have heard of other Amanita being consumed such as the Blusher but they did not rate it as being Choice, just Edible. The thing about Fly Agaric is that it is very common in my area and William Rubel, a chef, rates it as being Choice. I tried it in the past year only once and tend to agree with him.

Have you read about someone dying of the cumulative effect of eating Gyromitra esculenta after eating it for many years? Is there proof? Or is it just a Big Brother rumor? I have not heard about such a case. I found only one Gyromitra esculenta in 8 years and it did not look like anything I would choose to eat. If I lived in an area where it is common I might be tempted to try it. But if it did not taste Choice to me I would not continue to eat it. The people who eat it for 40 years must consider it to have an exceptional flavor. My rating of Yellow Morel has fallen from Choice to Good so I do not bother even picking it now. There are plenty Choice mushrooms around which are easier to find.

A friend and his family of Italian descent prefer Gyromitra esculenta to morels. In this area G. esculenta is much more abundant than morels. The taste seems to be dependant on preperation but the one time I tried G. esculenta I found it bland.

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Years back I tried a small serving of Gyromitra korfii. This looks like a small version of the Showbank False Morel of the Rockies (G. gigas). I cooked them for a long time time in a skillet with butter. Flavor was not as strong as morles; texture very good. I think it was 1997. We had a large fruiting around here. I have found G. esculenta, but I'm a bit :chickendance: to try it!

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My fater's parents were Polish immigrants. They ate all sorts of Russulas... boiled three times before preparation.

As a russian immigrant myself, I can attest directly to this - my family had absolutely no knowledge of any poisonous russula species. In fact, in russian, they are called "Sirayeshka", which when loosely translated means "eat raw"

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  1. Craterellus tubaeformis (simply better tasting than any other mushroom i have tried, much stronger than golden chantrelles).
  2. morchella crassipes (stronger flavor than esculenta in my experience, and the size helps)
  3. craterellus falax (black trumpet) (nice strong flavor pleasantly smoky and aromatic)
  4.  craterellus xanthopus (similar to tubaeformus but less good (only in northeastern NA))
  5. oyster mushroom (good but too often full of insects)
  6. boletus edulus (good but also often filled with insects, makes the tubes positively rank)
  7. Armillaria mellea (honey mushroom,  flavorful and plentiful)
  8. hen of the woods (real good in soup)
  9. lycoperdon pyriform (better flavor than its big brothers)
  10. cantharellus cibarius (too sweet and not strong enough to make it higher on the list)

 

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