Edible Wild Mushrooms of Illinois and Surrounding States: A Field-to-Kitchen Guide

University of Illinois Press
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Lavishly illustrated with nearly three hundred gorgeous full-color photos, this engaging guidebook carefully describes forty different edible species of wild mushrooms found around Illinois and surrounding states, including Iowa, Wisconsin, Missouri, Indiana, and Kentucky. With conversational and witty prose, the book provides extensive detail on each edible species, including photographs of potential look-alikes to help you safely identify and avoid poisonous species. Mushroom lovers from Chicago to Cairo will find their favorite local varieties, including morels, chanterelles, boletes, puffballs, and many others. Veteran mushroom hunters Joe McFarland and Gregory M. Mueller also impart their wisdom about the best times and places to find these hidden gems.

Edible Wild Mushrooms of Illinois and Surrounding States also offers practical advice on preparing, storing, drying, and cooking with wild mushrooms, presenting more than two dozen tantalizing mushroom recipes from some of the best restaurants and chefs in Illinois, including one of Food & Wine magazine's top 10 new chefs of 2007. Recipes include classics like Beer Battered Morels, Parasol Mushroom Frittatas, and even the highly improbable (yet delectable) Morel Tiramisu for dessert.

As the first new book about Illinois mushrooms in more than eighty years, this is the guide that mushroom hunters and cooks have been craving.

Visit the book's companion website at www.illinoismushrooms.com.

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About the author

Joe McFarland has been an outdoor writer for nearly twenty years and is a staff writer for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources magazine Outdoor Illinois. He lives in Makanda, Illinois. Gregory M. Mueller, an internationally known mycologist, was curator of fungi at the Field Museum of Natural History for over twenty-three years and is now vice president of science and academic affairs at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
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Additional Information

Publisher
University of Illinois Press
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Published on
Dec 19, 2011
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Pages
232
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ISBN
9780252094279
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Language
English
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Genres
Nature / General
Nature / Plants / Mushrooms
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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This completely revised second edition provides all the information necessary to identify mushrooms in the field in the midcontinental region of Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska, Missouri, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin: the tallgrass prairies and the western parts of the eastern deciduous forests.

The first edition has been improved in significant ways. The authors have updated scientific names, added photos where there were none and replaced poor photos with better ones, improved the keys, added some species and deleted others, added a section on truffles, and annotated the bibliography. There were originally 224 species; now there are 248. Some of the new photos—125 in all—serve as a second photo for a species, where it is helpful to show details that cannot be viewed in a single photo.

The authors describe each species’ cap, gills, stalk, annulus, and season when it is most likely to be seen as well as such characteristics as edibility and toxicity. In their detailed and lively introduction they discuss the economic and environmental aspects of fungi, basic mushroom biology, nomenclature, edibility and toxicity, and habitats and time of fruiting. Most important are the keys, which lead the dedicated reader to the major groups of fungi included in this guide. The section on mushrooms includes keys to their genera in addition to the species within each family discussed, and each of the subsequent sections has a key to the genera and species except where so few species are discussed that a key is not necessary. The volume also includes a glossary and two bibliographies, one with general and one with technical references.

Through their detailed technical descriptions and captivating color photos the authors convey their passionate fondness for these diverse and colorful organisms, whose mysterious appearances and disappearances have long made them objects of fascination.

Picking mushrooms in the woods on a sunny day can be fun for the whole family . . . but only if you do it safely! There are thousands of different species of fungi, so it can be hard to tell which are edible and which are poisonous when you are picking them for yourself in the wild. Safe and unsafe species often closely resemble each other, and worrying about which mushrooms are safe and which might be deadly can take all the fun out of mushrooming. Enter Mushrooming with Confidence!

Improving on the usual overwhelming and exhaustive wild plant guidebook, Mushrooming with Confidence is a slim, handy manual that focuses on the tastiest and most common mushrooms, so that you can easily spot those that are not only safe to eat, but also a delight to cook and share!

Here mushrooms are divided into four identification categories so that anyone will be able to recognize what he or she is looking at quickly and correctly. Thirty of the most common and delicious types are explained in detail, from the common field mushroom to the pretty purple amethyst deceiver and the prolific and tasty charcoal burner. Each mushroom includes a “Positive ID Checklist” that the reader can go through to be absolutely certain they have the right species, and more than 300 color photographs make it a snap to know exactly what kind of mushroom you’ve found . . . and whether you really want to pick it!

With lists of the best tools for mushrooming, the best techniques for getting a mushroom out of the ground in one piece, and even how to remove worms, Mushrooming with Confidence will extinguish any fear or doubt that might stop you from hunting down your own delicious mushrooms. This will prove a fun and essential guide for novice and experienced pickers alike!

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