Sarcodon (Hydnum) fuscoindicum collected commercially?

shaw shaw at
Thu Feb 22 01:47:33 EST 1996

Several retail produce stores here in the SF Bay area that often carry
wild mushroom have recently been carrying what I believe to be
Sarcodon fuscoindicum.    They are being sold as "black hedgehogs".
We've collected the same fungus this month in mixed tanoak/fir forests
on the north coast of CA (e.g. Salt Point State Park).

The stores are selling this mushroom as a choice edible.  I, and
several other mycophages have tried small samples of it sauteed in
butter, and we all agree that the taste can only be described as
"nasty" -- sort of like chewing on a cigar -- not a taste one is
normally looking for in a mushroom dish.  David Aurora's guide,
_Mushrooms Demystified_, lists the edibility of S. fuscoindicum as
"not recommended", and as leaving a peculiar burning sensation in the
back of the throat.  From my experience, this is an apt description.

I'm amazed on two counts:  (1) that commercial pickers are collecting
and selling this specie to retailers, and, (2) that these retailers
continue to sell it, and haven't been deluged by irate customers with
burning throats.

Has anyone else seen this mushroom sold commercially as an edible?  

Has anyone tried it that does *not* think it is essentially inedible?

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