Botanical name : Marasmius oreades
Common names : Fairy Ring Mushrooms, Fairy Ring Champignon, Scotch bonnet.
Physical appearance : The cap is between 2 and 5cm wide and has a slight bump in the centre. The top is smooth and buffish in colour (yellowish/brown). The gills are wide and usually free of the stipe, which is rough and fibrous. When dried, the skin becomes wrinkled and leathery and changes to a pale tan colour.
Edible parts : The fungus is edible in its entirety, although removing tougher stalks is recommended.
Best places to find : Most readily found in grassy areas, such as lawns, meadows and even dunes, in coastal regions.
Time of year : Best gathered in May - November although warmer climates can see this mushroom growing all year around.
Serving suggestions : Very tasty when simply fried in butter and served with some nice buttered bread. Also very nice when added to stews and casseroles.
Other uses : Suits long term storage as they dry out very nicely.
NB - Please be sure you know what you are picking. Many plants look similar to one another and many can be poisonous! This is even more the case when dealing with mushrooms. Please seek professional instruction if you are unsure! Don't risk your life!!!
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