Nacidas peeping out of the soil.
Nacidas peeping out of the soil.

We’ve had quite a bit of autumn rain, particularly at the forest altitude. That means that the wild mushroom season is in full swing.

There are people who know enough to collect all sorts of wild mushrooms safely, and they assure me that they’re delicious. I know it can be done. There are people who will never eat a mushroom unless it comes from the supermarket wrapped in plastic. I’m not one of them.

I also know that I’m shouldn’t do this myself; not now, and not for the foreseaeable future. I don’t know nearly enough.

So I stick to yellow false truffle, nacidas (Rhizopogon obtextus) because they can’t be mistaken for anything else.

Nacidas always grow in pine woods (they have some sort of symbiotic thing going on with the pine trees) and they look like new potatoes peeking up out of the ground, about the size of your thumb, or if you’re very lucky, a child’s fist.

Humans aren’t the only ones who enjoy nacidas. We have to share with mice,  rabbits, slugs and milipedes. Grajas (red billed choughs) have also been seen digging them out, although nobody knows whether they eat them or just play with them.

You have to eat them while they’re young, and young nacidas are firm to the touch and white inside.  If they’ve gone lemon yellow or grey inside, they’re too old to eat safely.  In the bottom illustration, the sliced nacidas at top left are good to eat, the ones at bottom left are dodgy (chuck them out) and the ones on the right are quite definitely too old.

There are lots of recipies, but personally I fry them with bacon and onions.

Sliced nacidas, some good to eat, some not.
You can eat the nacidas on the left, but not the ones on the right. If in doubt, chuck it out

This article has 1 Comment

  1. They don’t look like something which would be edible – but then neither do real truffles.

    I’ve picked and eaten mushrooms as I’m confident I can identify them, but I’ve not yet tried any other edible wild fungi.

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