Far West Blog

Erin Raser

Porcini

King Bolete If the lion is King of the Beasts, Porcini (Boletus edulis) is most certainly King of the Mushrooms -- as evidenced by its colloquial name, “King Bolete.” Rich and nutty (like many actual Kings of the past), these mushrooms occupy a high seat in nearly every European cuisine. Italians take almost as much pride in their Porcini as they do in their truffles. In France, they are famously known as “Ceps.” In Russia, they are an essential part of holiday meal traditions, and a forager’s greatest prize. Alongside the Morel, it may be the most revered and adored...

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Erin Raser
A Cultural History of Fungi

A Cultural History of Fungi

aHumanity’s relationship with mushrooms spans the entirety of our species’ existence. The oldest mummified body ever found, Otzi, or “The Ice Man,” had mushrooms in his pouch when he died in 3300 BC -- and they were still there when his body was discovered in 1991. Neolithic Man used mushrooms for food, medicine, and as tinder for starting the fires that made all of human evolution possible. Mushrooms appear in Egyptian hieroglyphics, in scenes depicting them as gifts from the gods, sent to earth on lightning bolts, and their use was forbidden to all but the pharaohs. This was also...

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Erin Raser
The Lobster Mushroom

The Lobster Mushroom

It’s not hard to figure out how Lobster mushrooms get their name. Their typically bright red color resembles lobster shells, and their distinctive scent conjures the buttery aromas of a Maine coast seafood boil. In a blindfolded test, one could be fooled into thinking they were actually smelling seafood. It may come as a surprise to find out that Lobster ‘Mushrooms’ are not actually mushrooms at all - but a mushroom parasitized by another fungus. Hypomyces lactifluorum is a ascomycete fungus that infects various species of wild Russula and Lactarius mushrooms. Interestingly, the specific host species are inedible in their...

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Erin Raser
Bay Area and Santa Cruz Restaurants Serving Far West Mushrooms

Bay Area and Santa Cruz Restaurants Serving Far West Mushrooms

CreoLa CreoLa is a quaint New Orleans inspired bistro, with locations in San Carlos and San Francisco. Their Wild Mushroom Jambalaya (photo above) is a Far West Fungi favorite! Owner and chef Eddie Caba is also a mycological society member and has been a long time Far West Fungi customer! Located: 900 Stanyan Street, San Francisco 344 Camino Real, San Carlos www.creolabistro.com (Creola is offering 15% off online and in-store with coupon code “MushroomMonth”) Namu Stone Pot Known for the ‘Cali-Korean’ dishes, and their World Famous Namu Stonepot Rice, featuring seven vegetables, tofu, kimchee, and sesame on a bed of...

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