🔕 🔔

My Basket ()

All questions

wild mushrooms

not looking to test and risk it, but found what LOOK like winter chanterelles in the woods behind a friends house. any tips on how to make a certain match?

asked by lauragushtv over 4 years ago
6 answers 1831 views
0f493ab9 068f 4498 ba2c 95c992214d52  sit2

Sam is a trusted home cook.

added over 4 years ago

All mushrooms are edible--once.

A9f88177 5a41 4b63 8669 9e72eb277c1a  waffle3
added over 4 years ago

Sometimes, Sam, you just kill me.

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar

Margie is a trusted home cook immersed in German foodways.

added over 4 years ago

If you have not been trained in identifying mushrooms, you need someone who has been to identify the mushrooms.

79ca7fa3 11e3 4829 beae d200649eab49  walken the walk

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added over 4 years ago

Even experienced foragers die every year from making a bad choice. In California there is a significant risk in the Asian communities because the mushroom hunters will pick something that looks like something they ate back home, maybe China ---- except that it's not.

84baef1b 1614 4c3d a895 e859c9d40bd1  chris in oslo

Chris is a trusted source on General Cooking

added over 4 years ago

I agree that identifying mushrooms on an anonymous hotline is not the way to go, particularly without location information. But since lauragushtv has already said she's not planning on risking eating them, I don't see why we can't share a little information.

The key to identifying chanterelles is learning to distinguish their ridges from some look-alikes with gills. In particular, there's a mushroom called the the jack-o-lantern, which has sharp gills that an unexperienced forager might mistake for ridges. Chanterelle ridges are forked, and that's a way to distinguish them from gills.

Another distinguishing trait is growth pattern. For example, jack-o-lanterns grow in dense clumps, which chanterelles never do. But they do grow in clusters, so learning to distinguish a clump from a cluster would be another lesson.

Foraging for wild mushrooms can be fun and delicious, and chanterelles can be safely identified. The way to get started is to learn directly from an expert. A LOCAL expert, as pierino pointed out.

3639eee1 5e0d 4861 b1ed 149bd0559f64  gator cake

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

added over 4 years ago

Chanterelles don't have classic gills, they have folds which tend to be forked or cross-veined. When you break a chanterelle in half the flesh is solid. The false chanterelle mushrooms have true gills and are hollow when you break them in half. I suggest you get a good mushroom ID guide or join a local mycological society if you're interested in foraging for mushrooms. Also practice identification for awhile before you decide to eat what you find - chanterelles are pretty easy to learn, as are hedgehogs, morels, and bear's head or lion's mane type mushrooms - but many other edible ones are trickier.

Let's Keep in Touch!

Get the recipes and features that have us talking, plus first dibs on events and limited-batch products.

(Oh, and $10 off your order of $50 or more in the Food52 Shop, too.)

Please enter a valid email address.