In recent decades, the Boletus, or Boletaceae, has become a coveted species when autumn arrives. So much so that there are real mafias who roam the forest in search of these precious mushrooms and then resell them without any control. People always say there’s no mistaking it, and although they’re relatively easy to identify, some care should be taken. The reason is that there is poisonous bolete which can harm our health whether eaten raw or cooked.
For this reason, we are going to dedicate this article to telling you everything you need to know about poisonous boletus mushrooms and how to identify them.
Boletus is a group of fungi that make up the family and genus of the genus Boletus. Thus, we can have boletes whose scientific names do not necessarily have to start with the word Boletus. Some examples are Chalciporus, Leccinum (this has made some adaptations to other genera), Gyrosporus, Xerocomus, etc… So when we say Boletus are Boletus it is true, but Boletus is not just Boletus . In this small classification, we enter the genus Boletus. The classification of fungi is carried out mainly by their morphology, and preciselythe submembranous layer appears first when determining genus or order.
In the case of Boletus, it is quite distinctive as it has a spongy morphology instead of the classic lamellar morphology. This makes gender identification relatively easy, but don’t get confused.
It’s toxic, so be careful. Fortunately, it is not easy to confuse it with the first 3 (edulis, aereus and pinophilus), because this one has a dirty white cap, a red foot in the middle, a yellow top and it smells bad too. The meat will be slightly blue when cut. (Our recommendation) If you see pink on the legs of a bolete, discard it. Good food isn’t red or pink, so there’s no reason to take the risk.
Another example of poisonous boletus, also common in Spain. This is easy to identify for several reasons. The first is that it has a yellow foot covered with a red crosshair, which makes it very distinctive. Second, when they are young, the pores are yellow, which may confuse us, but as they grow they are orange-red, and when they mature they become a very striking blood-red. The most identifiable characteristic is that the meat on the cap when cut lengthwise becomes bluish.
Another is suspected of toxicity due to its rarity. It is Boletus luteocupreus, and its feet are very similar to B. rhodoxanthus (yellow and red), so if we go it could be either, neither is good, so no question on this subject. Our suggestion is to know well all the morphological characteristics of the first 3 species (B. edulis, B. aereus and B. pinophilus) and those that are poisonous, so that it is clear that we are collecting good ceps.
Once we know the main poisonous boletus, we can know some that are edible and widely used in gastronomy.
One of the most famous and appreciated with boletus edulis. Of these three foods, one can get confused because they can be very similar, but there is no problem because all three are considered excellent foods. The most obvious difference between the three is the color of the hat.
In this case, the cap is dark brown, almost black, which is probably the main characteristic difference between B. edulis and B. pinophilus. Characterized by a white pulp, a sticky lid if the medium is humid and a light brown color which tends towards ocher (unlike B. aereus). Fruit membrane pores are often milky to yellow, and even green when very ripe, as in B. aereus.
Its hat is more brownish and reddish in color, a feature that differentiates it from the first two. The taste is a little different, but also very good and appreciated. This is typical in the westernmost regions of the peninsula, such as Extremadura and southwestern Castilla León.
The color of these three pores starts off as white or cream when they are young, yellow as they grow and green as they mature. All those boletus that do not have this range of colors (red, pink, very bright yellow, etc.) with pores (membrane of the fruit) are among the least popular or inedible boletus, so they can be combined with the hat color.
How to distinguish poisonous mushrooms
As we have seen previously, the Boletus satan is the most dangerous. Despite some similarities with other edible boletus such as the red boletus, the truth is that we can easily distinguish it in the bush if we follow these identification guidelines. The size of this mushroom gives it away. We are talking about one of the largest boletus, capable of reaching 30 cm or more. It’s a sight to see a hat of this caliber. But you have to look at the color. His hat is white and pale. A characteristic light gray color that resembles a clarified latte, with excess and thick edges. The cuticle is velvety matte. It is not uncommon to find specimens weighing around 2 kg. The pores of porcini mushrooms have a yellowish tint that ends in a reddish-orange and slowly turns blue.
The feet of the boletus are pot-bellied, also large, of a typical red color, similar to blood, with red markings. The flesh is pale yellow, cream-colored and turns blue-green when cut. The same goes for spores and test tubes. It smells really bad, especially when it gets old.
If one wonders where to find this fungus, it should be remembered that it is a fungus exclusive to calcareous soils. We won’t find it in other land types. It prefers full sun and dry forest gaps and associates mainly with deciduous tree species. Among them, oak, chestnut and cork oak will be your favorites. Although not an edible species, finding a good satanic hat in the grass is a difficult task.
Regarding his release, we can already imagine what his preferences would be, considering that it is a thermophilic species. We are talking about mushrooms that disappear as soon as it gets cold, so you will have to look for them in summer and early fall.
Hopefully with this information you can learn more about poisonous boletus and how to identify them.