Andorra is an ideal place to go mushroom hunting. Its mountains are home to a multitude of species that are highly valued in gastronomy, but you shouldn't pick them just any old way. Before getting to know the most popular varieties, we are going to explain the proper procedure to ensure that these delicacies continue to grow in abundance.
They can be harvested by hand or using a knife. In the first case, hold the mushroom by the stem and turn it 360 degrees. Pulling it out will damage the mycelium and affect the growth of more mushrooms. If, on the other hand, a penknife is used, the base of the stem should be cut off without driving the blade into the soil. It is important not to remove soil and leaf litter.
To store mushrooms, the best option is a wicker basket, so that the fungus can spread its spores through the holes in the basket and grow again. In addition, using a plastic bag prevents the mushrooms from transpiring, so they could spoil before they reach home.
Edible mushrooms from Andorra
One of the most popular mushrooms in Andorra. It usually grows in pine forests and is characterised by its orangey colour, with a cap that draws concentric circles and a cylindrical stem of a few centimetres. When cut, it releases an orange liquid.
The mushroom by excellence. It is easy to identify: it has a light brown, hemispherical cap which, as it grows, takes on a convex shape. In addition, the rim has a white line. It is not unusual to find specimens with a diameter of more than 25 centimetres and its trunk, robust and consistent, can reach approximately 20 centimetres. It is similar to other species, but they are also edible boletus.
It has a white stem from which many yellow branches sprout, similar to coral. Its flesh has a mild flavour and its smell is pleasant. It is approximately 10 centimetres high and 20 centimetres tall. It can be found in pine forests. Not to be confused with the salmon-coloured Ramaria formosa.
Considered to be an excellent edible, this mushroom is the first to appear after winter and is very difficult to find, as it grows half-buried. The cap can grow to just over 10 centimetres long and has grey tones. The stem is thick and short and the gills are thick.
Very common and easy to identify, it is highly valued for its versatility when it comes to cooking. It grows both in spring and autumn and is usually found in rust, in meadows and pastures. The cap ranges from 2 to 7 centimetres approximately, it is bell-shaped at the beginning and becomes flat when ripe. The flesh is cream-coloured and the blades are thick and fairly wide apart.
Grey in colour and velvety in texture, they can be found in the bush until the first frosts begin. They usually grow abundantly in groups, so we can fill the basket if we find a good hedgerow. The cap can reach 9 centimetres in diameter and the blades are uneven and spaced on the outside. Another of its characteristics is that the trunk is thin and breaks very easily.
Easy to find near oaks, chestnuts or holm oaks. They have a characteristic yellow colour, a pleasant aroma and a mild taste. The stalk is small and solid, and grows in diameter until it reaches the blades. The cap rises up on the sides and can exceed 12 centimetres.
Small and with a characteristic shape, they are difficult to confuse and, if you do, it will be an edible subspecies. However, they are difficult to locate. As their name suggests, they are trumpet-shaped, hollow inside and have an orangey-yellow foot. As for their flesh, it is elastic, fibrous and does not usually worm. It is also worth mentioning that they grow in large groups.
It gets its name from its similarity to this vegetable. Formed by flattened, intertwined and curled branches and a dense base. This type of mushroom usually grows in coniferous forests, at the foot of pine trees. It can reach a diameter of about 30 centimetres and its colouring ranges from white to yellow.
One of the largest mushrooms we can find. With a central mamelon, its cap has a flat convex shape and can easily reach 30 centimetres in diameter. Their blades are white, tight and soft and their stem can reach 40 centimetres. They also have a ring on the trunk, very evident in those specimens that have already developed. It is highly appreciated in cooking and is common in many areas and types of soil.
Highly sought after by mushroom hunters and difficult to find. Morels are noted for their delicious flavour, although they are toxic when raw. To eliminate toxins, the most effective method is to dehydrate them. If you want to boil or fry them, you can always hydrate them again in a few weeks.
Inedible mushrooms from Andorra
Beautiful and poisonous in equal parts. It is a mushroom that can reach 25 centimetres in diameter, red in colour and with white scales. Its flesh is fragile and the stem is very slender. Ingestion can cause nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. It can also cause hallucinations, tachycardia and episodes of euphoria or irritability.
The mushroom that causes the most poisoning each season due to its resemblance to other edible mushrooms. It is also one of the most deadly for humans. Its cap is convex when it is young and flattens over time, reaching 15 centimetres in diameter. The shades it adopts are greenish and yellowish. The gills are white, broad and uneven. Finally, the stem is cylindrical and widens towards the base.
Their danger lies in the fact that, when the first symptoms appear, between 6 and 48 hours after having consumed them, the damage they have caused to the organs may be irreversible. In fact, a liver transplant is often necessary.
It is notable for its large size (it can reach 30 centimetres in diameter) and its bright colours. In addition, it has a rather unpleasant smell. If ingested, it causes nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. All symptoms appear within about 20 minutes to 5 hours.
This genus of mushrooms has a large number of toxic varieties and those that are edible are very difficult to distinguish, so it is best not to pick any mushrooms. After ingestion, sweating, vomiting, weak diarrhoea and even decreased heart rate or anxiety occur. Some also contain hallucinogens.
Small in size, with a flared cap and orange or yellowish colours, it contains Orellanina venom. The first symptoms do not appear until after 2 or 3 days and are similar to the common flu: headache and stomach ache, nausea, vomiting... then it causes kidney failure.
The colour ranges from yellow to ochre or reddish and the cap is fleshy and flared. It is a very dangerous mushroom, as the poison can act up to two weeks after ingestion, affecting the liver and kidneys and causing necrosis, which can lead to death.
Very similar in appearance to the chanterelle, it can cause intestinal disorders, nausea and vomiting. We can tell them apart because this variety is covered with a kind of white hairs and produces a white milk when cut.
This is a very toxic mushroom, convex in shape and up to 4 centimetres in diameter. Although it is similar in colour and size to the Senderilla, this mushroom has smaller, more abundant and closer lamellae. It causes irreversible kidney or liver damage and can even cause death.
It has a similar appearance to fredolic, but we can distinguish them by touch: it has a solid, thicker stem. In addition, its cap does not flatten out completely at any time. In addition to having a very bitter taste, it is suspected of being somewhat toxic.
There are different species of lepiota that are toxic and are very similar to the dampener. However, these do not grow as large as the edible mushroom. To make sure you don't get confused, never pick a lepiota mushroom with a cap diameter of less than 10 centimetres. Lepiotes contain the same poison as green hemlock: they cause diarrhoea, colic and aggressively attack the kidneys, causing irreversible problems or death.