September 4, 2011
Hedgehog mushrooms (Hydnum repandum) are an edible mushroom that are named for their spore-bearing structures: tiny spines cover the bottom of the cap. These spines are very easy to break from the bottom surface with a brush of a finger exposing a smooth surface beneath. Hedgehogs also bruise red.
Hedgehogs are a great target for inexperienced mushroomers; no poisonous lookalikes exist.
This mushroom is a choice edible, though it bitters with age. Look for a smooth cap; mature mushrooms experience some cracking there. Older caps also accumulate more color and some even resemble chanterelles when viewed from above.
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