Merriam-Webster defines a mushroom as “an enlarged complex above ground fleshy fruiting body of a fungus (as a basidiomycete) that consists typically of a stem bearing a pileus.” Super appealing, no? Well, whether or not you find yourself craving the fleshy fruiting body of a fungus on a regular basis, these little creatures are damn delicious despite their not-so-flattering origin (they grow in poop).
They’re also packed with all sorts of nutritious goodness (good thing, eh? Again, they grow in poop. They need some decent redeeming qualities) like vitamin D, iron, and, in some cases, mushrooms can even give you an extra life
That said, do your research if you plan on eating some foraged fungi of your own. There are several thousand species in North America alone, and no, they are not all edible. Well, we suppose technically they are… as in: you can put ‘em in your mouth, chew ‘em up, and then swallow them. You may, however, die. So… do your research, okay?
Here’s a great article from the Mother Nature Network on wild mushrooms, just to help you get started. Regardless of how much reading and internetting you do, we suggest you become an “edible mushroom expert” by “buying them at the store” and “not guessing” whether the mushrooms you found in the forest that time will kill you or not.