10 Edible Mushrooms in the Netherlands
All kinds of edible mushrooms grow in the Netherlands. Some are even tastier than others. You do need to know what to look for, because picking random mushrooms can be very dangerous if you don’t know exactly what you are talking about. However, with a little experience, the species listed below are easy to eat and should not be confused with the most poisonous species we know in the Netherlands.
1 Velveteen legume
In Chinese, Korean and Japanese cuisine, the velvet foot (Flammulina velutipes) is a popular mushroom and is often eaten. It is funny to know that when they are not exposed to sunlight, they remain white in colour. That is why cultivated velutipes look paler than wild specimens. The species is common in the Netherlands and Belgium.
Chanterelles colour white, yellow and orange and have a similar shape to oyster mushrooms. Chanterelles taste peppery and smell like apricots. They are more endangered than in the past because they may be collected more than the mushroom can reproduce. For this reason, you should not pick them anymore.
3 Chaga (Birch weed fungus)
You will probably not recognise the birch weather fungus as a mushroom. It looks more like a charred piece of wood stuck to a birch than any of the other mushrooms in this list. Although chaga is edible when cooked (for a long time), in Eastern Europe it is more commonly used to make a kind of coffee. Substances with health-promoting properties dissolve in this drink. Chaga is quite common in the Netherlands, but prefers cooler temperatures and vast birch forests. Therefore it is better to buy chaga than to harvest it yourself in the forest.
Perhaps the best known edible mushroom in the Netherlands is the cep (Boletus edulis). The thick white stem with a thick cap on top reminds one of a fried bread roll. It is delicious in a fondue and is also known by its Italian name, porcini.
5 Lion’s Mane (Pruikzwam)
The Lion’s Mane is a rare species in the Netherlands, which decorates a bare autumn wood with its blond manes. The manes resemble those of a lion, which is how the fungus got its English name. Medicinal properties have been attributed to the fungus. Substances in lion’s mane stimulate NGF (nerve growth factor), which makes brain cells and nerve endings grow again. Lion’s mane (Hericium erinaceus) is also a tasty and nutritious fungus that, with some knowledge, you can grow yourself.