Oak boletus (Leccinum quercinum) is a tubular species of mushrooms from the genus Obabok. Popular for its high nutritional value. The composition of the fruiting body includes a set of elements that are useful for the human body. The species is common in mixed forests of European and Central Russia.
What oak boletus look like
The oak boletus is a large mushroom that is a species of the numerous boletus family.
The fruit body has a massive stalk and a dark brown or brick-colored cap, the shape of which changes as the mushroom matures:
- in young specimens, the upper part is rounded, tightly pressed to the peduncle;
- in middle age, the cap opens, takes the form of a pillow with concave edges, the average diameter is about 18 cm;
- ripe fruit bodies may have an open, flat cap, in some cases with curved edges;
- the protective film is dry, velvety, in some specimens the surface is porous, with small cracks;
- the lower part is tubular, with small cells, the spore-bearing layer at the beginning of growth is white, over time it turns yellow with a brown tint;
- the tubular structure has a clear border near the stem;
- the flesh is white, dense, unbreakable, thick, darkens if damaged, then turns blue;
- the leg is thick, the structure is solid, the surface is finely scaly;
- the lower part often goes into the ground, near the mycelium the color is darker than in the upper part.
Important! A scaly coating of dark brown, less often black color is a distinctive feature of the oak boletus.
Where oak boletus grow
The oak boletus is often found in mixed or deciduous forests. They are located only under oak trees, with the root system of this tree species they form mycorrhiza.
They prefer moderately moist soils, can grow in the shade on a layer of dead leaves and in open space among low grass. By the location of the mycelium, you can determine how extended the root system of the oak is.
Oak boletuses grow singly or in small groups. They begin to bear fruit in the middle of summer. The main peak occurs at the end of August; in dry weather, the formation of fruiting bodies stops, resuming after precipitation. The last copies are found in late September - early October.
Is it possible to eat oak boletus
The species has no false siblings among its family, all boletus are classified as edible mushrooms. The flesh of the fruit body is white, does not change color after processing. Has a sweetish taste, pronounced mushroom smell. There are no toxic compounds in the chemical composition. They use oak boletus even raw.
False doubles of oak boletus
The gall mushroom has an external resemblance to the boletus.
The color of the mushroom is bright yellow or brown with a brown tint. In terms of size and fruiting time, these species are the same. The twin differs in that it can grow under all types of trees, including conifers. The cap is more open, the tubular layer is thick, protruding beyond the edges of the cap, with a pink tint. Leg with a clear mesh of veins. When broken, the pulp turns pink.
Important! The gall mushroom has a bitter taste, the aroma resembles the smell of rotten leaves.
In the composition there are no toxic substances, the species is classified as conditionally edible, before use, the fruit body is soaked and boiled.
Another double is a pepper mushroom. In Russia it is included in the category of conditionally edible, in the West it is classified as poisonous. Toxic compounds present in the fruiting body, after frequent use, accumulate in the body, which leads to the destruction of the liver.
The colors of the upper part of the mushrooms are similar. The leg of the twin is thinner and more monochromatic, without a scaly coating. The tubular layer is loose, with large cells. When broken, the flesh becomes brown. The taste is pungent. It is almost impossible to get rid of bitterness even with careful processing.
The chemical composition of oak boletus is dominated by protein, which is not inferior in nutritional value to protein of animal origin. In the process of decomposition, it releases toxic substances that cause poisoning. When harvesting, it is not recommended to cut overripe specimens. Age can be determined by the shape of the cap: it becomes flat with raised edges, the spore-bearing layer is dark and loose.
Also, they do not harvest in an ecologically unfavorable zone: near industrial enterprises and city dumps, on the sides of highways. Fruit bodies absorb and accumulate harmful substances and heavy metals.
Oak boletuses are characterized by high nutritional value. Fruiting bodies are suitable for any processing method; soaking or boiling is not required for cooking. Oak boletus is a good option for winter harvesting. They are dried, frozen, salted and pickled.
The oak boletus is considered an elite species. Frequent, high fruiting. The beneficial substances in the composition of the fruiting body are completely preserved after heat treatment.