49 thoughts on “Mushroom Mutants”

  1. That last mushroom needs a seriuos dose of Viagra.

    I can’t beleive the size of the one in pics 2 to 5. Incredible…but are they edible? Or do you glow in the dark after eatin these “Chernobyl Specials”?

      • They are Porcini? (tho I imagine they are called something else in Russia and the Baltics) If so, that is a wonderful….gigantorific Porcini…yum…you could stuff and roast that thing like a turkey. Oh the flavouricious possibilities.

        • I think they are called “podberezoviki” in russian, which basically means “under a birch tree”. They are not “Porcini”, but are similar. Porcini are called “Beliy Grib” or “White Mushroom”.

          • All of the mushrooms in all photos are of the Boletus genus. What you call “podberezoviki” are Birch bolete. They have red top and if you cut them that area turn black or blue very fast. Porcini or boletus edulis or belij grib will never discolor it will stay white even after you boil it, dry it or fry it. That is the reason why Russians call it white mushroom. Look at fifth photo. It has been cut in half and it has slight tinge of red in it’s meat. Not because it’s discolored – it’s natural because it’s so old. In the very first photo you see bunch of Birch boletes and one normal size porcini mushroom on the very left. The very big mushroom is definitely a porcini mushroom. It is old and might not be good for consumption. Nevertheless it is quite rare to see such big and nice porcini mushroom.

            • Yes, you are correct. The big mushrooms are boletus edulis. There quite a few of them in UK this time of year. I normally go to the nearest woods on sundays and get at least three of four and at least a dozen of “Birch Bolete”. Its also quite handy that Brits are not great lovers of wild mushrooms 😉

              Do you normally gather or buy mushrooms?

              • I go mushroom hunting. It’s a lot of fun. I remember watching Hells Kitchen with Marco Pierre White. He used fresh and very very nice porcini mushrooms. I’ve never been to UK, but i’m guessing porcini must be quite expensive.

                • In the supermarkets they are extremely expensive about £5.00 for 100g of dried porcini. You could get a good deal on fresh porcini in some farmers markets, but they are hard to come by and you must really know how to haggle.

                  I actually prefer to the whole experience of hunting for fungi, even more then actually eating them. I get tremendous amount of satisfaction finding mushrooms. I guess its the notion of self sufficiency and general excitement of finding a fine specimen. From September to the end of November, I just have to spend my sunday mornings in the woods 🙂

            • Also, the one in the second picture, looks more like a giant “Maslenok” or “Suillus grevillei” because of the slippery cap. So its difficult to tell..

    • No, these are a tastefull mushrooms and without any psychodelic effect.
      Aren’t there such mushrooms in north US-states ?

      It’s popular and rather noble kinds of mushrooms in continental Europe (as I know rather except British/Irish or Islandia islands) and probably in all heater parts of Siberia.
      The smaller ones (kozak in Polish ) are little more noble kind as the big one (podgrzybek).

  2. I don’t think the giant mushroom photo was taken in Russia.
    The plastic bag in the 3rd photo comes from a supermarket in Italy.
    As you can see there is written on “Sa cosa …”.
    Then full motto is “Sa cosa voglio”, translated as “Knows what I want”.


  3. The taste is great. We call it “prawdziwki” in poland and those are one of the favorite in central europe (and it is easy to pick them in germany because most of people thinks that if something is not on the shelf you can’t eat it)

    I don’t know the name of the last one but for sure there is a “shame” word inside 😉

    • I am wondering if mushroom gathering is also popular in the US. If so, what types are most commonly gathered or generally preferred?

      • Chantrell’s are popular pickings in the Pacific NW, and of course, as always, teenagers like to pick the various varieties that contain psilocybin in the middle of the night.

        • Chanterelle are certainly nice, but there are so many varieties, many of which are poisonous. I just wouldn’t risk with these species. Do “russula” grow in the NW? They normally prefer cooler climates, but there are quite a few in the south of england 😕

      • It’s not very popular since most people are afraid to eat things not bought in grocery store. Mostly immigrants gather mushrooms over here, though there are some micological societies e.g. http://www.wildmushrooms.org/

        As for me I really enjoy mushroom hunting. I found my first porchini/белый гриб/ in this season last weekend somewhere on Oregon coast, it was really good :).

        I generally only pick the following kinds of mushrooms:
        Boletus edulis – белые грибы

        Cantharellus – лисички

        Hedgehog mushroom – no russian name

        Lactarius deliciosus aka рыжики

        Leccinum scabrum – подберезовики

        Leccinum aurantiacum – подосиновики

        Suillus luteus- Маслята

        • Yes, that’s the knids I also normally go for just to be safe. I especially love Suillus luteus, but I never seen them in UK though. However, there were tremendous amounts of them in outside Moscow this August, and I’ve certainly enjoyed some while I been over there. I made fantastic mushroom risotto – absolutely delicious 🙂

  4. The Musroom Hunting is very common in Russia (and Poland too), especially in (summer),autumn. In Poland u can search many kind of mushrooms for example boletus edulis its most popular.

    100g dried boletus edulis – 50pln it’s 10 pounds.

    1kg’s fresh boletus ~~ – 20/30 pln.

    (Kruszyniany, small village near Belarus border is the best for huntings mushrooms XD)

  5. Looks normal to me, just that one is extra large. Where I come from all of our indigenous mushrooms contain psilocybin so I hunt for them a good portion of the year.

  6. They seem normal to me. As a matter of fact, I recall mushroom gathering with my family when I was 5 or 6, and we found some mushrooms sizing 15-25cm in diameter. I was kinda bummed for such huge mushrooms filled the buckets too fast and got the fun out of the whole hunting/gathering process and it meant I had to go home earlier than expected… 🙁

    No, nothing to do with Chernobyl. I found mine in South Western Siberia. Mushrooms can reach unusually large sizes. It’s rare but not impossible.

  7. It’s not mutants. It’s normal mushrums. Once in while some of them grow to such a huge monsters but thats realy not an effect of Chernobyl.

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