Thursday, May 05, 2011

Beware The False Morel Mushroom

Beware of the False Morel.
It will simply...

very sick.

From a mycology site: *Unlike morel mushrooms, false morels are poisonous and eating them can cause illness or even death. False morels contain the toxin gytomitrin that, when ingested, produces monomethylhydrazine (MMH), the leading chemical in rocket fuel, according to the University of Alaska. In addition, false morels possess carcinogens, which carry long-term health risks.*

From the Missouri Department of Conservation:

*The problem seems to involve the amount of a toxic chemical, called monomethyl hydrazine (MMH), present in these mushrooms. MMH causes diarrhea, vomiting and severe headaches, and occasionally it can be fatal. However, because of different cooking techniques and different individual sensitivities to MMH, false morels poison some people but leave others unaffected. In addition, false morels in some areas of the country contain more MMH than in other areas. All this makes these mushrooms a very doubtful group as far as edibility is concerned.*

That should be enough to scare the beejesus out of you.

If you do go, take someone who knows what you are looking for. Morels are delicious and can be frozen or dried. I enjoy them all year 'round in soups, stews, and with breakfast.

Find the right ones and enjoy!

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