Thick-legged honey fungus is a mushroom with an interesting history. You can cook many dishes with it, which is why it often ends up in baskets. The main thing is to be able to distinguish it from similar species.
Are there mushrooms on a thick leg
Forest mushrooms on a thick leg are not uncommon, so every mushroom picker should know how they look. The species belongs to the genus Openok, the Fizalakryevye family. The mushroom has other names - bulbous or cylindrical Armillaria. Previously, it was also called autumn, but later scientists came to the conclusion that these are two different species.
What does a thick-stemmed mushroom look like?
It has a number of features; upon close examination, it is easy to distinguish it from other species. Below is a photo and description of a thick-legged mushroom:
Description of the hat
The hat reaches 10 cm in diameter. In young specimens, it is dome-shaped, but then opens almost completely, the edges become slightly lowered. The cap has scales radiating from the center. They darken in old fruiting bodies, descending to the stem. The color can change, there are brown, pinkish, brown and grayish.
The pulp is light, it smells like cheese. A white spore powder is formed. A honey agaric hat on a thick leg is visible in the photo:
The leg grows up to 8 cm, reaching 2 cm in girth. Its shape resembles a cylinder, expands downward. The pulp of the leg is fibrous, elastic.
Edible honey fungus or not
Thick-legged mushrooms are classified as edible mushrooms. But before eating it, it must be boiled thoroughly to remove the bitterness. In its raw form, it has a peculiar pungent taste.
How to cook fat-legged mushrooms
After harvesting, mushrooms are processed almost immediately. First of all, they remove forest debris - adhering leaves, needles, twigs, earth. Then washed well. Before preparing any dish from them, boil the mushrooms to get rid of the bitterness. To do this, 1 kg of honey agarics will need 2 liters of clean water and 1.5 tbsp. l. salt.
All ingredients, except the mushrooms themselves, are mixed in a deep saucepan and brought to a boil. Then mushrooms are poured there, the heat is reduced and left to cook for 15-20 minutes. Ready mushrooms are thrown into a colander to get rid of excess water. They will cool down and will be suitable for frying, stewing, salting.
Advice! Fat-legged mushrooms, pre-boiled, can simply be frozen.
How to quickly pickle thick-legged mushrooms
There is a quick pickling method for these mushrooms.
The following ingredients are required:
- 500 g of mushrooms;
- 500 ml of water;
- 50 ml of table vinegar;
- 100 ml of vegetable oil;
- 3-4 garlic cloves;
- 2 tsp granulated sugar;
- 1 tsp salt;
- 2-3 pcs. bay leaf;
- 1 teaspoon mustard beans;
- black peppercorns according to your taste.
Honey mushrooms must be rinsed well and begin to prepare the marinade. The ingredients are mixed in a container, brought to a boil and only after that the mushrooms are added there. Leave on fire for 5-10 minutes. Then the mushrooms in the marinade are laid out in jars and put into the refrigerator for at least 4-5 hours.
Hot pickling of fat-legged honey agarics
In order to pickle mushrooms, you need the following ingredients:
- 1 kg of mushrooms;
- 2 tbsp. table salt;
- 1 tbsp. Sahara;
- 1 tbsp. vinegar;
- 2 carnation buds;
- 1 bay leaf;
- 5 pieces. peppercorns.
Peel honey mushrooms, rinse and boil for 10-15 minutes. Add salt and spices to a container with water, pour vinegar after the liquid has boiled. Then immediately add the mushrooms. Keep the pan on low heat for 20 minutes. The product processed in this way is laid out in jars, but not closed, but placed in a saucepan and sterilized for 25-30 minutes. Finally, the workpieces are covered and stored in a cool place. It is necessary to ensure that the sun's rays do not fall on the banks.
Hot salting of autumn thick-legged honey agaric
Fat-legged honey mushrooms are not only pickled, but also salted. They are equally tasty in all cooking options. With the hot method, the mushrooms are boiled and then salted. Required products:
- 1 kg of thick-legged honey agarics;
- 3 tbsp. salt;
- 3-4 stalks of dill;
- 3 bay leaves;
- 3 pcs. carnation buds;
- peppercorns 6 pcs.
After the boiled mushrooms have cooled down, several layers of spices and honey agarics are formed in the container. There must be salt on top. The resulting mass is covered with a clean cloth, a plate is placed and the weight is placed on it. The container should be cool, the fabric is periodically changed so that it does not sour from the brine released. The dish will be ready in 25-30 days.
How to dry mushrooms for the winter thickleg mushrooms
Honey mushrooms are suitable for drying for the winter, but they do not need to be washed and boiled. It is enough to clean the debris well. Whole young specimens are taken, in the presence of wormholes, they are discarded. You can dry in the sun or in the oven. Usually they are strung on a string. The optimum oven temperature for drying is 50 ° C.
Advice! The mushrooms should be about the same size, otherwise the small ones will burn, and the large ones will not have time to dry.
In the oven, periodically turn the baking sheet over. When they reach the desired state, they are put in jars and put away in a dry place. It is important to remember that mushrooms can absorb odors, so store them indoors with fresh air. Before preparing something from a dried product, it is first soaked.
How to fry fat-legged honey mushrooms with onions
Honey mushrooms fried with onions are a common dish. For him you will need:
- 300 g of onions;
- 1 kg of mushrooms;
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil;
- salt pepper.
Rinse honey mushrooms well, and then boil. In the meantime, prepare the onion - cut it in half rings and fry in a pan, adding oil there. As soon as the pieces become transparent, mushrooms are added to them. When mushrooms are ready, they will turn golden in color.
Medicinal properties of honey agarics with a thick leg
Fatfoot honey fungus is not only edible, but also helps in the treatment of certain diseases. It contains vitamins A and B, polysaccharides, potassium, zinc, iron, copper, magnesium. Has the following healing effects:
- reduces high blood pressure;
- normalizes the digestive tract;
- increases resistance to acute respiratory infections.
There are also contraindications:
- children's age up to 3 years;
- period of pregnancy and lactation;
- acute phase of gastrointestinal diseases.
Where and how it grows
The species prefers rotten stumps, trunks of fallen trees, rotting leaves. Most often it can be seen on beech and spruce, less often on ash and fir. A large crop is harvested in a temperate climate, but at the same time it is found in the southern regions, also in the Urals and the Far East. Grows in groups, appears from August to mid-November.
Growing autumn thick-legged honey agarics at home
Honey mushrooms on a thick leg can also be grown at home. But some nuances must be taken into account - the mushroom is a wood-destroying species. Mycelium is purchased in specialized stores.
Mushrooms are grown in two ways:
- On a rotten tree - the method is simple, it can be used even in an apartment. The substrate is placed in a container and poured with boiling water. Hay, straw, or sawdust will do. When the mixture has cooled, it is decanted, the excess moisture is squeezed out and the substrate is mixed with the mycelium. Each manufacturer indicates the exact proportions on the packaging. The resulting composition is placed in a plastic bag, tied and cuts are made on the surface. For germination, it is placed in a convenient place or simply suspended. No lighting is required; it takes about a month to wait for germination. But when the rudiments of fruit bodies appear, it is necessary to remove the bag from the darkness. On the film, more cuts are made in the places of germination. Fruiting lasts up to 3 weeks, but the largest harvest is harvested in the first two.
- On rotten plant residues - this option is more difficult, but more long-term in terms of the harvest period. Bars 35 cm long and 20 cm in diameter are soaked for a week. Then holes are drilled in the tree and the mycelium is laid there. The top is fixed with tape and covered with paper, straw or cotton wool. The mycelium will germinate within 6 months. The bars should be kept in a cool room at this time. The temperature in which the mycelium survives is from + 7 ° C to + 27 ° C. The crop is harvested up to 3 times a year.
Attention! The most useful are very young specimens, the older, the less the healing effect.
Young mushrooms with a thick leg are presented in the photo:
Doubles and their differences
The thick-legged mushroom has doubles, with which inexperienced mushroom pickers can easily confuse it. Some are edible, some are poisonous. These include:
- Autumn honey agaric - the cap in adult specimens reaches 15 cm in diameter, and the color of soft tones ranges from gray-yellow to yellow-brown. The pulp is pleasant to the taste and smell. In contrast to the thick-legged honey fungus, this species is found both on living and decayed wood. Edible, but there is controversy about its taste, and in Western countries it is generally considered a low-value species in terms of eating. Autumn puffy mushrooms are presented in the photo:
- The honey fungus is dark - a similar look, but differs in that the ring on the leg breaks unevenly in it, and in the thick-legged one it is star-shaped. Also, the smell of this species does not resemble cheese, it is quite pleasant. As they grow, the scales disappear from the surface of the cap. It is edible. Honey mushrooms on a thick leg are brown-gray, which can be seen in the photo
- The scales are fleecy - there are a lot of scales on its cap, spores of an ocher hue. The stem of the mushroom is long, rather thin, tapering downward. Has a pungent odor and an unpleasant bitter taste. Considered conditionally edible.
- False foam is sulfur-yellow - the yellow hat has a brown tint. The plates are grayish. The leg is light yellow in color, hollow inside, thin. The taste is bitter, the smell is unpleasant. The fungus is poisonous.
Interesting facts about thick-legged mushrooms
In the state of Michigan in the 90s of the last century, an oak forest was discovered, which was completely inhabited by thick-legged honey agarics. The trees were cut down and after a while pines were planted in their place. But young seedlings were almost immediately struck by thick-legged mushrooms and could not develop further.
After the soil in the forest was examined, it was discovered that there is a mycelium in it, the total area of which is 15 hectares. Its mass is about 10 tons, and its age is about 1500 years. DNA analysis of individual fruiting bodies was carried out, and it turned out that this is one giant organism. Thus, it can be argued that Michigan is home to the largest single living organism for the entire existence of the Earth. After this discovery, the species became widely known.
Fat-legged mushroom is an edible mushroom, which is also very convenient to collect during the season, it grows in large groups. For those who do not like to walk in the forest, there is an option to grow it right in the apartment. It is good for any cooking method. What a thick-legged mushroom looks like can be seen in the video: