Edibility of Lepistas

Marco Floriani floriani at sodalia.it
Mon Nov 18 05:21:21 EST 1996

Harry Lehto wrote:
> Dear mushroomers,
>               I ran accross two Lepista species Lepista nuda (=Blewit)
> [finnish name: Sinivalmuska] and Lepista nebularis [Härmämalikka].
> (Both have been assigned sometimes to Clitocybe of Tricholoma genera.)
> Any way, most books I have tell that these are edible, but warn that
> some people get gastric side-effects.
> I would like to hear about experience of such effects with these mushrooms
> and wheather they occured if mushrooms were boiled before preparing them
> for food.

Lepista nebularis is a problematic species from the point of view of
edibility. It is surely toxic when raw, so it has to be cooked for
quite a long time; during cooking the toxins it contains are eliminated,
but a certain amount of them remain in the water where the fungi are
cooked. So it is highly recommended to eliminate this water before
the fungus. Moreover, this fungus is easily parasitized, e.g. by Volva-
riella surrecta [= V. loweiana] and by Aspergillus and other molds. In
this case L. nebularis becomes toxic because of the fungi that grow on
Finally, it seems that many people are allergic to L. nebularis, and
eat it even if it is cooked properly and when young.

Last year in the northern part of Italy at least 100 intoxications
caused by L. nebularis occurred, so that this fungus can be no longer
sold in markets. Lepista nuda seems to be much safer, but also this
fungus must be well cooked.

Marco Floriani
Via Vigolana, 8
I-38057 Pergine Valsugana (TN)
E-mail: mflorian at inf.unitn.it

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