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hedgehog mushrooms are NOT chanterelles.

Whole Foods Makes Multiple Mushroom Mistakes!

I don’t shop at Whole Foods regularly, but my sister does. She texted me before Thanksgiving, excited to tell me she’d bought chanterelles for us to cook and share. Imagine my surprise to find that the mushrooms Whole Foods was selling as chanterelles were, in fact, nothing of the sort. Fortunately, they were another edible mushroom, so no danger of poisoning here, but still… Shouldn’t we expect more from a respected national retailer? (That’s a rhetorical question. The answer is yes.) Ah, but it gets worse. This wasn’t an isolated incident, and Whole Foods has chosen NOT to correct the problem.

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hen of the woods

Hen of the Woods: a Great Beginner’s Mushroom

If you’ve ever eaten maitake mushrooms, you’ve eaten Hen of the Woods (aka Grifola frondosa). Whatever you call it, this meaty bracket fungus has excellent taste and substance. Hen of the Woods is a polypore, which means that its undersides have pores, not gills. It usually grows at the base of hardwood trees or from underground tree roots, and is a perennial mushroom. You’re likely to find it growing in the same place, year after year, until it kills the host tree.

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how to preserve your mushroom harvest

The Best Way to Preserve Your Mushroom Harvest

They don’t call it mushroom hunting for nothing. While mushrooms may be perennial, they are never predictable. That’s part of what makes it so darned exciting. When you hit the mushroom jackpot, you could easily go home with 30 pounds of choice fungi, in which case you better know how to preserve your mushroom harvest! Mushrooms are highly perishable, and different mushrooms require different preservation methods to maintain their deliciousness.  Read more

Chicken of the Woods

Chicken of the Woods Mushrooms

Chicken of the Woods (aka sulphur shelf, aka chicken mushroom) actually refers to several mushrooms in the genus Laetiporus. L. sulphureus is generally considered a fall mushroom, and L. cincinnatus is usually found in mid-summer in my part of the world. Both are easy to spot thanks to their vibrant color. Foragers sometimes call them 50-mile-an-hour mushrooms, because they really stand out in the landscape. Read more

porcini mushroom

Boletus edulis (aka Porcini): The King of Mushrooms

Boletus edulis is known by many names: porcini, cep, penny bun, steinpilz, and king bolete, to name a few. Whatever you call it, it is one of the most delicious and desirable edible mushrooms in existence. It’s no wonder serious mushroom hunters keep their special spots secret, checking them every few days during porcini season so as not to miss a single, precious mushroom. Read more