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Wild-Foraged Oyster Mushrooms Answered

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I've always wanted to forage for wild mushrooms, but have been hesitant to do so with just information gleaned from the internet because the risk to reward of a really good tasting mushroom versus a mouthful of neurotoxin is too asymmetric for me.  However, today while hiking in the Berkeley Hills, Christy and I were lucky enough to run into someone collecting oyster mushrooms from some rotting logs.  He turns out to be a member of the Mycological Society of San Francisco and helps with their annual Fungus Fairs, and so was eager to help us identify more oyster mushrooms and death caps, which have recently caused some illness near us.

We collected the oyster mushrooms shown here, and I sauteed them with a little bit of butter, salt, and pepper for dinner.  They were fresh, earthy, and tasty!

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Masterdude (author)2010-01-25

I'd recommend just choosing some species like the morel, Red-capped scaber stalk, and chanterelles (there is the jack-o-lantern mushroom but there are some noticable differences and it glows in the dark). These are easy to identify and I've eaten many of them (and haven't gotten sick). Also you should probably best stay away from the russula species since there are I think hundreds of species, some edible and some not, and all are almost the same or have a wide range of possible looks so I doubt it is the best mushroom species to find and eat.

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Goodhart (author)2009-11-16

I'm even more paranoid about wild mushrooms.   Except foro one varitety, I don't gather wild one's myself.  Morels are nearly impossible to mix up with poisonous ones though.   Also, I saw this not long ago.....

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=SMART= (author)2009-11-15

Those mushrooms look really nice !
But as you say delicious and deathly mushrooms look very similar so i will stick to the ones in the supermarkets :D

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Molten Boron (author)2009-11-15

Information gleaned from the internet?

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Ninzerbean (author)2009-11-15

But just because you didn't meet him on the internet doesn't mean he was who he said he was, really, anyone can appear to be looking at mushrooms on a log but what are they really looking at? Did you get his username? His email address? His facebook page? Eric, you have to be really careful in the real world.

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jess (author)2009-11-14

om nom nom!

I have found oyster mushrooms growing in Dimond Park.  They're all over the place around here this time of year!

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