Ingredients: 3 cups chicken of the woods mushrooms, cleaned Free Food. This mushroom is in the Laetiporus genus, of which there are 2 or 3 species in North America; namely Laetiporus sulphureus having yellow pores, and L. cincinnatus having white pores. The pore surface, opposed to gills, is a very important characteristic of the underside of mushrooms. Chicken of the woods though, is a good place to start as it is easily identifiable, as there is nothing that looks quite like it, and certainly nothing poisonous. Forage & Chatter, a restaurant in Edinburgh's West End which opened late last year, brings locally sourced Scottish ingredients, including foraged ones, from a 25-mile radius to diners. The top surface of Chicken of the Woods is bright orange which can be either more reddish or yellowish than you see here. Because this mushroom grows when many other mushrooms have stopped fruiting and it tastes a bit like chicken, one can understand why many people soldier on … Chicken Of The Woods. Chicken of the woods has been known to fruit on living trees as well. Look for them on downed oak and maple as the bark peels off. Chicken of the woods is a sulphur-yellow bracket fungus of trees in woods, parks and gardens. Chicken of the Woods mushrooms are considered a great beginner's mushroom because there's nothing else out there that looks like this. I'd like to know if anyone out there keeps their chickens primarily in a forested area of their property as opposed to a more open, pasture-type setting (I tried searching the site briefly but didn't see anything relevant - feel free to point me to a previous post if you know of one). This mushroom is in the Laetiporus genus, of which there are 2 or 3 species in North America; namely Laetiporus sulphureus having yellow pores, and L. cincinnatus having white pores. The cap is yellow, pink or orange, often in bands, and usually wavy with. The chicken of the woods here are breaded by dipping into flour-egg-flour here. After carefully squeezing past the nettles and brambles to investigate, I found myself standing on a pile of old logs. Chicken of the woods is found growing on or at the base of dead or dying hardwood trees; most commonly on oak but also cherry or beech. Dyers maze gill (Phalous Schweinitzii), which surface is a lot more rough, chicken of the woods has a velvet surface and typically grows higher up on oak trees. Firstly, I have to stress if picking wild mushrooms, or any wild flora, fauna or fungus, you must be one hundred percent sure on the I.D. Chicken of the woods diced up and cooked in a little butter with garlic and Italian parsley. Coastal Foraging Scotland Chicken Of The Woods (Laetiporus sulphureus) While Lion’s Mane is one of the easiest mushrooms to identify, its presence is a bit more rare than some of the other choice edibles. Go forage! One of the main factors in safely identifying this mushroom against several other bright orange mushrooms is that it grows directly on wood. Use as a food Chicken of the Woods has a rich poultry-like flavour and texture. Autumn came a bit early this August and September with very cool nights and comfortable days, stimulating the fruiting of a favorite fall fungi, the hen of the woods, maitake, or Grifola frondosa.Some weekends we are so busy with lectures and walks that we don't have much time to forage for our own pantry, but hen season can get us out in the woods all week long. They are available from August- November. I have never even seen this mushroom grow on any evergreens. Your email address will not be published. It is also eaten by deer. We do have dried chicken of the woods all year. It's been named 'chicken of the woods' because of a flavor and texture similar to that of chicken Older specimens are tough and acidic. It tends to lighten in color near the edges. The mushroom can be prepared in most ways that one can prepare chicken meat. Another name for this fungus is Sulphur Polypore. Fresh Chicken of the Woods are a very tasty mushroom. From my experience, each tree hosting a chicken mushroom will tend to have it’s own “clock”, meaning that you could go somewhere and cut one, then come back two months later a… This beautiful and relatively easy mushroom to identify is amazing in a stir fry, baked, breaded and fried, and can be sautéed just as one would prepare chicken. Summary 2 Laetiporus sulphureus is a species of bracket fungus (fungus that grows on trees) found in Europe and North America. Giant Polypore (Meripilus Giganteus), this fungus is typically found at the base of trees whereas chicken of the woods is found higher up trees, giant polypore also discolours black on contact which chicken of the woods doesn’t. Here’s a video on ethical and sustainable harvest in a tongue-in-cheek “zen” way: Check out more videos at the Return to Nature Youtube Channel, Our Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/returntonatureskills It is edible when young and fresh, and considered a delicacy in Germany and North America. Even if you do eat meat, it can be a nice way to cut down on your meat intake without sacrificing the flavor of your meals. The Foraging Course Company, The Hall, Rugby Road, Wolston, Warwickshire, CV8 3FZ, Chicken of the Woods - Laetiporus sulphureus, Sulphur Shelf, Sulphur Polypore, Crab of the Woods. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Chicken of the Woods, where they grow, how to identify, and how I cook them. It might not seem that important, but part of what makes this so addictive is the crust, as well as your mushroom being in a good stage for eating in a thick slice. I’ve also heard that chicken of the woods growing on evergreens can be an issue for some peoples digestive systems; although this may be a rumor from mistaking poison hemlock (Conium) for the edible and medicinal hemlock tree (Tsuga sp.) Because chicken of the woods are extremely firm and fleshy, you can prepare them on the grill, similarly to a portobello. fruiting body is up to 20 cm broad, shelf-like, rubbery, with bands of sulphur yellow and orange older specimens are paler, brittle, chalk-like, and inedible. Its common names are sulphur polypore, sulphur shelf, and chicken of the woods.Its fruit bodies grow as striking golden-yellow shelf-like structures on tree trunks and branches. This bracket fungi is found throughout Canada, U.S., Europe, and parts of Asia. I have been enjoying following Matt’s instagram feed, and love that I can tag him in a picture and ask for his help in identifying a plant or fungus while out foraging.This is a wonderful time of year to get out there and pick, and I enjoyed reading Matt’s top 10 things to forage in autumn. There are some specialist beetles which only feed on bracket fungi like chicken of the woods, including the hairy fungus beetle (Pseudotriphyllus suturalis). Introducing “Chicken of the Woods”, or COTW, or chicken mushroom, or sulphur shelf. The Yoga of Plants Part 2 – Plant Ritual and Mantra in Ayurveda Webinar, Immune System Health – Herbal and Holistic Tips Webinar, “Working with Ticks and Lyme” Online Class, Spring Cleansing and Herbal Healing Tonics Webinar, “Return to Nature Radio” Podcast (Coming Soon), http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12741318, Colombia – Seeking the Medicine – Winter 2015, Hunting the Medicine Documentary, Foraging Appalachia 2014, India – Seeking the Medicine – Botanical Journey, 2012. Serve it as an appetizer, side dish, or add it to meat or pasta. Take Chicken Of The Woods, for example. It can often be found in tiered clusters on oak, but also likes beech, chestnut, cherry and … This fascinating orange-yellow mushroom is one that cannot be cultivated or farmed easily (in fact, it is known to be extremely difficult to accomplish), so we only forage for them. Chicken of the woods are parasites, decomposing or infecting living trees, eating them from the inside out. It can also be found on dead conifer stumps. Please let us know if you know of any. Forage at your own risk. Attempting to eat any of the plants or mushrooms discussed on this site may cause harm. Chicken of the woods is one of the safest, widely available mushroom, referred to by David Arora (Mushrooms Demystified) as one of the “foolproof four”. In order to find these it’s helpful to know how they grow. Of course, your time is worth something, and it probably wouldn’t be worth the effort to scavenge cheap foods like potatoes – but many foods found in the wild cost a pretty pe… Foragemobile Roving Apothecary and School Crowdfunding Project! Found on dead or dying Oak, Cherry, Willow, Yew, Sweet Chestnut, and Beech, Cap is yellow, pink or orange, often in bands of these colours, Often several caps stacked one on top of the others, Flesh is white and resembles cooked chicken breast, Growth: Chicken of the Woods is saprobic growing on dead or dying Oak, Sweet Chestnut, Cherry, Willow, Yew, and sometimes Beech, Cap: Size is up to 50cm, sometimes larger, and often layered one on top of the other. The young Chicken of the Woods is “succulent” and has a mild flavor. Required fields are marked *. For those too nervous to forage but curious to taste them, chicken of the woods can be cultivated on old hardwood logs. Also, medicinal mushroom research has also shown that chicken of the woods is also medicinal and is active against staph, ” All strains demonstrated antimicrobial activity against a wide spectrum of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria during agar and submerged cultivation including methicillin-resistant strain of Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and glycopeptide-resistant strain of Leuconostoc mesenteroides.” – Check out more about their medicinal aspects at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12741318. Ethical and sustainable harvesting of all mushrooms is important, and although there is some debate among mycologists, it is generally recommended to remove the tender part of the mushrooms with either a knife, or by hand, and in the case of chicken of the woods, by breaking off the fans, but not necessarily removing the entire base. Chicken of the Woods - Laetiporus sulphureus Edible mushroom - novice Other common names: Sulphur Shelf, Sulphur Polypore, Crab of the Woods Scientific name meaning: Laetiporus comes from the Latin word Laetus - meaning gay, pleasing or abundant - and porus, meaning pores. Some species, especially Laetiporus sulphureus, are commonly known as sulphur shelf, chicken of the woods, the chicken mushroom, or the chicken fungus because many think they taste like chicken.The name "chicken of the woods" is not to be confused with another edible polypore, Maitake (Grifola frondosa) known as … of which there is no relation, other than their common name. It is often thick and fleshy. Because Chicken of the Woods can grow close to the ground, care should be taken not to harvest in areas where dogs may foul. Popular edible varieties include cep, chicken of the woods, chanterelle, wood blewitt, hedgehog fungus and morel. The flavor of these is incredible. This brightly colored mushroom can be found growing on dead or mature trees, most often large oak trees. I decided to research foods I can forage in my own neck of the woods, but there are plenty of options wherever you are, too. Foraged food costs nothing except the time you spend finding and picking it. If in doubt, leave it out! The author bears no responsibility for your actions. It is very similar in taste and texture to chicken and can be used as a substitute for it. Chicken of the woods is an easily identifiable and safe mushroom to start your mushroom seeking adventures.. Hen-of-the-woods, oyster, black trumpet and chicken mushrooms take us deeper into fall, with hen-of-the-woods, also called maitake, some of the fanciest. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. By Alyssa Craft | 7/25/2016 10:35:00 AM. If found on Yew, be aware that this mushroom can engulf the poisonous leaves and bark quite readily. Today I’m excited to share a great guest post from a local foraging expert. Always stay safe when foraging. It’s probably worth doing this anyway, just to have more. One main issue in their edibility is people harvesting it once the mushroom is dried out. A tolerance test should be carried out before consuming for the first time. Flesh: White and fibrous, resembling cooked chicken breast, Possible lookalikes Could be confused with some specimens of Giant Polypore (Meripilus giganteus), but this prefers Beech and bruises brown to black. A fast growing mushroom, some flushes can produce massive quantities. This easy chicken of the woods recipe was adapted from Italyville.com, an awesome and delicious Italian cooking blog. Chicken of the Woods (Laetiporus sulphureus) When I was out collecting elderflowers for cordial the other day, I caught a glimpse of bright orange in the bushes. and Return to Nature on Instagram: Instagram/returntonature, Your email address will not be published. Pores: The pore surface is white or pale yellow the pores often too small to see with the naked eye. Although there is no evidence that Chicken of the Woods takes up toxins from you tree, we are not currently aware of any scientific proof that it does not. Foraging for food is more than just a fun pastime – though it certainly can be that too. Often on chicken of the woods everything but the fans are very woody and inedible, while this can be used for stock, the real gem is in the soft succulent tips, which break off like the texture of chicken. Sacred Ecology Retreat – California, Jan. 2018, Foragemobile Forest retreat at Mt. Chicken of the Woods mushrooms come in handy for vegetarians because they can be used in place of chicken (or as a general meat substitute). The Return to Nature #Savetheseeds initiative! Multiple sources from multiple authors should be consulted. Scottish Natural Heritage has produced a great guide about Scotland’s fungi and the Scottish Wild Mushroom Forum also has a Mushroom Code to advise gatherers on best practice. Otherwise, it can be one of many other mushrooms, some of which can be poisonous. I … With "petals" that fan out like flowers or hen feathers, they're sometimes referred to as dancing mushrooms, especially in Japan, where folk legends tell of people dancing for joy when they found them. Chicken of the woods is a vital species, supporting a host of wildlife. Chicken of the Woods (aka sulphur shelf, aka chicken mushroom) actually refers to several mushrooms in the genus Laetiporus. This means that when you find it, you should look to see that it is orange and fan shaped, has a porus underside, and is growing out of wood directly. In North Carolina we have two species: Laetiporus sulphureus and Laetiporus cincinnatus. I ended up sautéing them until a crispy skin developed with a little olive oil, lemon pepper, black pepper, salt and Worcestershire sauce. Mushrooms. The chaps at the restaurant wrote in with a suggestion that we go foraging for some Chicken of the Wood mushrooms since they're currently abundant in the UK and Ireland and are easy to recognise. Chicken of the woods mushrooms are easy to identify, impossible to harvest unsustainably, are tasty in any mushroom dish! Hazards This mushroom causes gastric upset and nausea in some people. Please let us know if you know of any, Importance to other species Unknown. Laetiporus is a genus of edible mushrooms found throughout much of the world. You need to be 100% sure of your identification, 100% sure that your foraged item is edible, and 100% sure that you are not allergic to it (it is good practice to always try a small amount of any new food you are consuming). “Seeking the Medicine” Herbal Series Intention. Laetiporus sulphureus. Only young, fresh specimens should be used for eating. Charleston, Colombia - Seeking the Medicine - Winter 2015, India - Seeking the Medicine - Botanical Journey, 2012. 2. Chicken of the Woods Recipe . Gathering your own food offers a wide variety of benefits, including the following: 1. They begin fruiting in the beginning of the summer, and will continue into the fall. Sulphureus is a refernece to the yellow colouring if the fruit bodies Using flour, egg and breadcrumbs can make things overly heavy, soggy, and oily. The bright orange color is lacking in other similar-shaped shelf mushrooms. This is easily avoided by only eating a small amount to see first how you’ll react to it, and this is especially important for children. After that, mushrooms quickly become bug hotels. The top surface of Chicken of the Woods is bright orange but, as they age, will dull to yellow or even white, developing a more sour flavor with time. The texture is similar, and it can be a good replacement in any recipes that call for chicken. It's delightful common name, Chicken-of-the-woods, may derive from the fact that the brackets resemble chickens' feet. This mushroom has no gills, instead its bright yellow undersurface is covered with tiny pores. How to Forage in the Woods for Wild Edible Plants (with Video) Reader Contribution . It's a simple and tasty way to enjoy their flavor and texture. It can also be used as a substitute for chicken in a vegetarian diet. See Hazards regarding other consumption warnings, Use in herbal medicine Some haemolytic and haemagglutination activity has been seen, If you are suffering from any ailment or need medical advice, please see your General Practitioner. L. sulphureus is generally considered a fall mushroom, and L. cincinnatus is usually found in mid-summer in my part of the world.Both are easy to spot thanks to their vibrant color. In most climates without high humidity, you really only get 3-4 days after the rains to get fresh mushrooms. Chicken of the woods is an easily identifiable and safe mushroom to start your mushroom seeking adventures. This may be one of the factors of why a select few people can get digestive upset eating this mushroom. flesh is white to yellow tinted, firm, softer at the edges.