Eleventh Issue, May 2003
Published about twice a year from
by Herman Brown
Back to HOMEPAGE
Click on some images to see a larger picture
This has been an unusual spring for this
area. We had short bouts of warmer than usual weather, followed by
many days of light rain and cooler weather. The two combinations I thought would yield
a good crop of mushrooms. I was a bit disappointed in the earlier spring
crop, but surprised by the number of species we found in the
winter. As the area continues to warm up, the mushrooms should become more prevalent.
During this period I found a few new
mushrooms for me, the Mycena pura and the Helvella leucomelaena.
In the next issue, I will be including
more reports made right after the warmer weather began.
Findings, February 2 to May
Sunday, February 2: Because
of the long series of warmer-than-usual days, we decided to hike along an
old road between the Paxton Bridge on 70 to The Dawn Institute along 89,
to see what, if anything, had popped up. Because this area had been
under snow most of the previous winters, we didn't know what to expect.
We didn't find much in quantity, but we did
find lots of variety. To see a more detailed report plus a few
pictures of that day, click HERE.
We identified some lilac-colored Mycena
pura, a first for me, several Laccaria amethystina,
a few Lactarius rufulus, and what I think was a
Melanoleuca melaleuca. Several others we found were never
identified, but the mere presence of any mushrooms here at this time of
year, was a pleasant surprise.
Friday, February 7: On this day
we traveled south and went on a short
excursion in Southern California to the San Simeon Bluff and around the
We hoped to find some mushrooms there because
of the rains they had had about a month ago, and we were also hoping to
find some warmer weather than what was presently here in Greenville. We found little of either.
had been very warm and dry there for more than a month, and the weather had
just turned cold. However, we did find many old mushrooms,
most that looked like they dried out before maturity, and we even found
a few fresh ones. The mushrooms that we found were some Shaggy
parasols (Lepiota rachodes or Macrolepiota rachodes), many Bleeding Agaricus, (Agaricus
fuscofibrillosus), some Blewits (Lepista nuda
or Clitocybe nuda), and a few Amanita muscaria.
Some of the Shaggy Parasols were still fresh. I left them alone
because there weren't very many. I also found one fresh Hygrocybe conica in
Cambria in the State Park at the north end of Moonstone Beach.
We were mainly looking for the Agaricus, as
they can very tasty when fresh. This recent rain in that area should bring
them all back in the same numbers.
Wednesday, April 16:
are finally making an appearance, at least in Greenville at 3600 ft. They have
probably already appeared at the lower elevations.
Today, a friend who lives just outside of town, dropped by to show me
what she thought might be a morel. She was correct.
I immediately rushed to her property to see what she saw.
There were several in her apple orchard, ranging from 2" to 4" tall,
probably close to a pound's worth. It was a nice thing to finally
see this spring.
I also found a batch of Helvella lacunosa under one tree.
I checked the woods around her property but only found one more. I
want to go back later with my camera and another friend, to show him
what they looked like and to take a few pictures before I
picked any for myself. He had yet to see his first morel.
Tuesday, April 22: This
morning my son-in-law called to report what looked like morels growing on
I immediately went there and found 15 small
to medium-sized morels.
I looked around the rest of the wooded
property and found the largest Fuzzy Truffle (Geopora cooperi) that I had
ever seen, near some fruit trees and above the soil. It was almost
the size of a tennis ball.
I walked down a dirt road to see what else
might appear, and only found a few White-footed Elfin Saddles (Helvella
leucomelaena), a first for me, but no more morels.
Then I went back close to the house where I
found the large Geopora, and found a few more still under the soil, all
with a small bump to announce their presence. Under a large bump I
found one even larger then before. This one was 3" across at the
longest dimension, and weighed in at about ¾ lb. This one was the
largest one I have ever seen.
I went home, cleaned and cooked the
truffles, and ended up with about ½ cup cooked. They tasted great and
were well worth the struggle to clean them. I still haven't found but one
morel in the forest.
If you want to see pictures of the Fuzzy
Truffles, go to:
Wednesday, April 23:
This morning I
took a friend up to a lake above town, to see if we could
find any morels.
On the same property I found the large
rings of Marasmius oreades last year, we found two medium-sized clumps of Blewits. This property is at about 4400 ft, and most of the snow
had already melted.
No morels yet though. As before, it seems that every mushroom
that grows on this property seems to grow in clumps.
the same day, I went up to an area near Lake Almanor (4400 ft.), and
actually found 2 morels. I continued to search some of my other
"spots" but didn't find more morels. I did find several
species of other colorful mushrooms, including a couple of Amanita
Saturday, April 26:
My friend, Ron, called me this morning to report that he had seen what
looked to him like Shaggy Manes while on a hike with his family.
told him I would be right over to let him show me what he had found.
I got to his house, he
led me to a short dirt road next to a creek nearby, and we could see them on
the road ahead as soon as we parked. As we got closer, I recognized them
as the Shaggy Manes and was very glad I brought my basket. We saw 2
pretty close together, and as I gathered these, he saw more patches under
the willows along the creek, right adjacent to the other 2 patches.
As we bent over to pick them, Ron found 3 medium-sized morels. I
wouldn't have noticed them, but I had shown him a few a couple of days
earlier, and he recognized them immediately.
he called me over to see a pretty amazing site, which was a bunch of the
biggest Shaggy Manes I had ever seen.
I took a few of the Shaggy Manes home and left Ron the rest, as he is quite
fond of them. I'd say we found well over 5 lbs.
checked more of the areas that were close by but found no additional mushrooms.
I am not quite sure where to look for mushrooms. I guess the best
bet is to take lots of hikes all over town, and carry a knife and bag in
case something fungal appears.
Sunday, April 27: Don, a friend who lives in Crescent Mills, stopped by the house with his wife on his way
back from a walk down Main Street
in Greenville. They were carrying several morels in their
He said that they found all of them along the side of Main Street, under
some old apple
He showed me a few that were free from the stalk, and
added the he had been told that this was a sign that they weren't real morels and that they were probably poisonous.
My hand holding a
But these were the edible, half-free morels, or
Morchella semilibera. I had only seen one before in downtown Quincy.
I put them all in a small paper bag and weighed them for him. The total weight combined was
¾ lb. Not a bad haul.
So, if you have any old apple trees in your neighborhood, you might
want to check them out.
April 28: Today I took a hike around my daughter's property, but only
found 2 morels. But I did find what looked like a too mature
Tricholoma flavovirens (Man on Horseback), a mushroom that I hadn't found
here for a few years.
Cecelia and I drove down the long access road, we stopped at a last year's
tree-thinning operation and found quite a few Gyromitra esculenta, but
only 1 morel.
On the way home
I checked out a few of the old apple trees along Main Street, and found a
few morels that my friend had overlooked.
I think we have enough for a small meal.
I plan to cook up the Gyromitra, using some preparation tips that Larry S
just sent me. This will be my first taste for them.
May 1: Went north of here and looked for morels. Found only 2,
but near the lake I found a rather robust Melanoleuca evenosa, a new one
for me. Later, I had a very pleasant surprise. I checked under an
old apple tree where I had just recently found some morels, shortly after
a friend had just found some himself, and noticed 3 small ones. I
went home and told a neighbor's son, who had said wanted to go with me
when I searched for them, and took him there so he could have the thrill
of finding and picking them himself.
he picked those three, he noticed another, and then another, and on the
other side of the barbed wire fence, he saw about six, fairly large-sized
Needless to say, he climbed the
A homeowner who lived nearby
saw us and asked us what we were looking for, and after telling him we
were looking for mushrooms, he told us that he had seen a big mushroom
growing in his back yard. I asked to see it, and on the way to his
back yard, saw 3 large green rings in the grass, with a few clumps of
Marasmius oreades growing in one of them. We gathered those before
continuing to his back yard where we found a very large Suillus.
gave it to my neighbor's son so he could taste it, after warning him about
peeling it and the texture after cooking.
May 2: On this day, we decided to check out a particular old apple
tree in town and found a few morels. One was the biggest I had ever
seen, about 6" tall. While we were picking them, a friend who has
property above town (4400 ft.) stopped to tell me he had just seen some
mushrooms on his property.
I went up
there to check, and he showed me several puffballs, which turned out to be
Calvatia fumosa. However, these had skin that was twice as thick as the
books describe, causing me to doubt my original ID. Later, I got
mycological help from Fred Stevens, which assured me that they were indeed
the C. formosa.
I took one for myself
and left the owner a bag full. He also showed me a couple of mushrooms
he thought might be the Spring King Boletes, but when I removed one from its
mound, I saw it had gills. They turned out to be Cortinarius
multiformis, which is a very pleasant-looking Cort. It tempts me to
want to try a taste someday.
Calvatia tasted very good.
May 3: Today I went to a large yard to check another old apple tree, but
on the way to the tree found about 50 small puffballs, the Bovista
Some were pretty large, but I took most with me. No morels though.
I checked a few other areas around town and gathered a few more puffballs.
When I got home, I painstakingly peeled them and cooked up a dish called
Puffball Parmesan, which was very nice tasting and worth all the effort.
I don't think I will ever pick that many Bovista plumbea again, especially
the smaller ones. Too difficult to peel.
May 5: After gardening most of the day, I went up to
to quickly recheck a few of my morel spots. One yielded a small
batch of small morels. Some were still beneath a small mound. On
the way back to the truck, I rechecked the area more closely now that I knew
they were around, and found a few very small ones. I plan to recheck
those I left behind, periodically, to see how fast they grow.
also saw several of the small Snow bank Orange Peel fungus, the Caloscypha
I think the season has finally
started for the morels and others. Finally, I am beginning to see more
variety and color in the mushrooms that are coming up.
I plan to take Cecelia up there with me and recheck some of my other spots.
She has better morel eyes than I do.
a week or so, they should be a bit better in number and size.
May 16: Today, Cecelia and I went up towards Lake Almanor (4400 ft) to
recheck some of the "spots" we'd checked the week before.
found more than a few morels, a few also-called Pig's Ears (Discina
perlata), only 1 Snow Mushroom (Gyromitra montana/gigas), 1 large Yellow
Coral Mushroom (Ramaria rasilispora), several Pink Crowns (Sarcosphaera
crassa), lots of the pretty Snow Bank Orange Peel Mushrooms (Caloscypha
fulgens), 1 pink-streaked Hygrophorus purpurascens
or pudorinus, what
looked like an Amanita muscaria, and many other unidentified species.
of the morels were found on disturbed soil, some in fire rings, some in
the ashes, many were naturals, some were on the side of a dirt road, and
some were IN the road. The largest groups and sizes were the
naturals we stumbled upon in our search for disturbed areas.
the Discina and Gyromitra combined, the total weight came to 1¾ lb. Not
too bad for a few hours walking.
would say the spring season has finally begun at 4400 ft.
for Wild Mushrooms in the San Francisco Bay Area Stores
The following is another compilation of
some messages received from the MSSF mailing list, this time regarding sources of
''wild" mushrooms in the SF Bay Area. In September, 2004 I added a
special issue with pictures from two of the stores, Foraging for Wild Mushrooms in the Bay Area stores.
From Mark Thompson, January 17, 2003:
I'm working on an updated listing of good places in the Bay Area to buy
mushrooms. I have some of the East Bay places such as the Berkeley
Monterey Market, Andronico's etc.. but don't have much info on
San Francisco, Marin, the Peninsula, San Jose and
Santa Cruz. If anyone has any
recommendations of places that regularly sell wild mushrooms either fresh
dried I'd appreciate it. I'll gladly post the list on here once I've
compiled it. Also, if anyone knows of inexpensive places to buy dried
mushroom varieties I'll include that. If you could provide the
that would be great:
Name of the store
types of wild mushrooms you've seen there
a brief description about freshness, quantity, seasons that they carry
and how high their prices are.
From Mark Thomsen:
Based on the feedback I got and on an earlier list that I had, here are
places to buy wild mushrooms in the Bay Area. If you have additions
comments please send them to me and I'll keep this updated.
Where to buy wild mushrooms in the Bay
Andronico's with 11 Bay Area locations almost always has some wild
on the shelf. Prices are generally high. Quality varies
greatly from low
to high by location and by how long the mushrooms have been left on the
Costco carries large bags of dried porcini and shiitake at excellent
Molly Stone's Market
with locations in
San Francisco, Sausalito, Palo Alto
and San Rafael sells wild mushrooms that are usually of good quality but
Ranch 99 is a large Asian grocery chain with locations in
Richmond, Daly City, Fremont, Cupertino, Milpitas and
San Jose. It is a very good
buy dried Asian varieties of mushrooms as well as fresh shiitake.
Farmer's Market on Sunday at the Civic
Center. The Solano mushroom
a stand that carries a wide variety of local wild mushrooms in season.
Berkeley Bowl. This is one of the best places to buy
mushrooms in the Bay Area. Prices are low, quality is high and the
selection is diverse. You can often find unusual varieties such as
caps and cauliflower mushrooms there.
Berkeley: Monterey Market.
The Monterey Market is in close competition with the Berkeley bowl as
the best place to buy wild mushrooms in the Bay Area. The
mushrooms are usually fresh, prices are low and the selection is large.
They carry Oregon and Chinese truffles in season. They are also
the only place that I've seen that sells dried candy caps. They
generally have a large selection of dried wild mushrooms.
Oakland/Rockridge: Market Hall.
The pasta shop carries white and black truffles in season. They
also have a large selection of truffle oils.
Cotati: Oliver's Market always has wild mushrooms and exotic
ones. They are usually in good shape.
Kentfield: The Woodland Market sometimes carries chanterelles,
hedgehogs and truffles.
Mill Valley Market carries wild mushrooms from local
hunters and wholesalers.
Marin Farmers Market:
Mushroom stand run by Sunnie regularly sells
mushrooms bought from local hunters and wholesalers.
Napa: Vallergas Markets in North, South and East Napa carry a fall
spring selection of the standard chanterelles, porcini, morels,
yellowfeet chanterelles and lobster mushrooms.
St. Helena: Big Paw Grub @ (707) 967-9718 has brought unusual
market such as Lactarius deliciosus and Amanita lanei.
San Anselmo: United Market occasionally carries chanterelles and
Draeger's in San Mateo, Menlo Park and
Los Altos generally always has wild
mushrooms in season. Prices are high and the quality ranges from low
very good. They also carry fresh truffles in season.
Piazza's on Middlefield usually has wild mushrooms
chanterelles and morels even when they are out of season locally.
are high and quality is OK to good.
South Bay/Santa Cruz
Cosentino's Market with 2 locations in San Jose and 1 in
Clara sells the standard wild varieties as well as blewits and candy caps
occasion. They also sell dried morels and porcini. Prices are
From Debbie Viess
Nice listing, Mark. I'd also add Chinatown in SF,
many locations, where
you can buy shiitake and dried wood ear mushrooms ($2 for a gallon
bag!). And if you look hard enough, maybe some of those dried
stinkhorns, yum yum. In some of those Chinese herbal shops, mushrooms
are at the low end of the weird scale.
From Bill & Carol Hellums:
What, no San Francisco stores? Tower
Market has fresh (not dried) wild
mushrooms of many kinds -- not always the best condition or prices, but a
lot of variety. In addition to the usual (porcini, chanterelles, matsutake,
morels), I've seen sporassis, ramaria, lobsters, craterellus, a number of
others I can't remember and in some cases never even heard of....
My favorite was the bin of pig's ears for (if memory serves) around $15
pound. Caveat emptor, indeed.
Great meat and deli sections too. Their address is 635 Portola Dr. (at
From Peter Werner:
> Costco carries large bags of dried porcini and shiitake at excellent
If you're listing dried wild mushrooms,
sources for these are very
common, probably too numerous to mention - I've even seen packets of
dried porcini, chanterelles, and morels at Albertson's.
> Ranch 99 is a large Asian grocery chain with locations in Richmond,
> City, Fremont, Cupertino, Milpitas and San Jose. It is a very
good place to
> buy dried Asian varieties of mushrooms as well as fresh shiitake.
Shitakes and most of the common Asian varieties are not wild mushrooms,
but "exotic" cultivated varieties. Matsutake, of course, is
wild, but I'm
not sure if Ranch 99 carries them or not.
> San Francisco
Several supermarkets in Japantown carry matsutake in season - I've
forgotten the names of the stores, though.
> Berkeley: Monterey Market. The Monterey Market is in close
> with the Berkeley bowl as the best place to buy wild mushrooms in the
> Area. The mushrooms are usually fresh, prices are low and the
> large. They carry Oregon and Chinese truffles in season.
They are also the
> only place that I've seen that sells dried candy caps. They
> a large selection of dried wild mushrooms.
The only problem with Monterey Market is that they keep their mushrooms
on un-refrigerated shelves, so their mushrooms are often in a somewhat
deteriorated or dried-out state. Berkeley Bowl and Andronico's keep their
mushrooms on refrigerated shelves.
From Debbie Viess:
Refrigerated or not, Andronico's and the Bowl can display some pretty
rotten mushrooms. Monterey Market keeps the whole place cold, and their
quality is no different, and sometimes better. Wherever you shop, choose
wisely and let the buyer beware.
From Robin MacLean:
> Costco carries large bags of dried
porcini and shiitake at excellent prices.
Costco's shitakes are not a good price
when compared to Asian markets...maybe they are when compared to
> Several supermarkets in Japantown
carry matsutake in season - I've
> forgotten the names of the stores, though.
Maruwa is a good, large supermarket in
From Bill & Carol Hellums:
Could I add a little more on San
Francisco farmers' markets?
I did some checking, and the stand at the Sunday Civic Center market
isn't the Solano mushroom farm. (I think they sell at the Marin farmers'
market.) Rather, it's Hazel Dell Mushrooms in Moss Landing.
They're at FOUR San Francisco farmers'
markets: the Sunday and Wednesday Civic Center markets, as well as the
Saturday Ferry Plaza market and the Saturday Alemany market. They have
wild mushrooms in season, as well as more exotic cultivated species --
several different kinds of oysters, for example, and bear's head.
Prices and condition are excellent.
They're certified organic growers, and -- for those with sensitivities
-- they don't sell Asian imports, which are sometimes treated with
The owners, John and Toby Garrone, are
long-time MSSF members and have been generous contributors of mushrooms
to various MSSF events.
The Medicinal use
For more than a few years now, Cecelia and I have been taking a
tea daily, made from the Ganoderma oregonense, with mixed results. I
found that my insulin requirements seem to have dropped slightly as soon as I
started taking the tea, and both of us seem to have had far less flu and cold
symptoms during the winter months.
In March, a message from Dan Long, posted on the MSSF online
mailing list, prompted a short response from Mike Boom, which, in turn
prompted a few more responses regarding the medicinal use of mushrooms.
From Dan Long:
Dr. Andrew Weil will be on Larry King Live on
Wednesday talking about alternative medicine. I saw pictures of mushrooms when
they were showing the preview.
From Mike Boom:
Mushrooms as medicine is a popular topic
within and without the MSSF. While I believe that some fungi are healthy
food and that some fungi contain medicinal components, I'll have to admit
that I'm a little skeptical about all the health claims made about fungi.
I'm sure some of them are true, but many of them feel quite a bit like snake
oil medicine: claims of cure-alls that don't have much backing. A case in
point is the kambucha craze around eight years ago.
I'm curious if there are some impartial
studies of mushrooms as medicine available on-line. By impartial studies I
mean some of the same double-blind tests that are applied to standard
medicines by people who don't have a financial stake in selling those
medicines. I'd like to know how many fungal medicinal claims have more than
just anecdotal backing.
I'm also curious if any of you know of any
fungal medicinal claims that have definitely been proven false.
Thanks, Mike Boom
From Elizabeth Sampson:
One place you can find information
published in professionally recognized, peer reviewed journals,
regarding the medicinal properties of mushrooms is on the National Center
for Biotechnology Information
Website. The address is www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/.
Use the pull-down menu to search PubMed for
your keyword of interest. For example I searched
"Ganoderma" and found a number of articles including (just
for example): "A water-soluble extract from cultured medium of
Ganoderma lucidum (Rei-shi) mycelia suppresses azoxymethane-induction of
colon cancers in male F344 rats." Lu H, Kyo E, Uesaka T, Katoh
O, Watanabe H, Oncol. Rep. 2003 Mar-Apr;10(2):375-9
Most articles have abstracts, some can be
obtained full text online free of charge (not many). All can
be obtained through UC Berkeley or UCSF libraries.
Have fun, and Good Luck with your search. - Beth
From Lynn Marsh:
You will find many medical articles on the
scientific study of medicinal mushrooms and herbs at the East Asian
Collection University of California, San Francisco (on Parnassus) 5th floor.
The UCSF East Asian Collection emphasizes the
historical development of medicine and the health sciences in China and in
Japan before 1900, and particularly Rangaku, studies of Dutch medicine in
the Edo period, and the transition period from traditional Japanese medicine
to Western medicine.
It encompasses books on both
theoretical and clinical developments in medicine and related health
sciences in Japan, and their relation to medicine in China, Korea and the
West. Textual studies of medical and herbal classics written in Japanese and
Chinese are included.
The East Asian Collection is especially
strong in books related to the history of Western medicine in Japan from the
middle of the 16th century to 1900.
It also holds a number of books on the
history of medical societies and medical and pharmacy schools in Japan.
Other areas of strength include Japanese pharmacology, Buddhist medicine,
Korean medicine, Japanese traditional opthamology, obstetrics and gynocology,
acupuncture and mosibuston.
The East Asian Collection includes some 500
pre-1868 early and rare printed Japanese and Chinese medical books, 400
manuscript titles, and 400 Japanese woodblock prints relating to indigenous
medicine in those countries, as well
as some 6,300 titles of modern publications in Western and Asian languages.
It helps, of course to be able to read
I have collected about 10 or 12 medical
papers on mushrooms and medicine that have been published in authoritative
Here are abstracts from a couple of them.
Cancer Letter 2002 Aug 28;182(2):155-61
Anti-tumor activity of the sporoderm-broken
germinating spores of Ganoderma lucidum.
Liu X, Yuan JP, Chung CK, Chen XJ.
Food Engineering Research Center of State Education Ministry,
Zhongshan University, Guangzhou 510275, People's Republic of China.
The inhibitory effects of the dormant
spores, the germinating spores, the sporoderm-broken germinating spores (SBGS),
and the lipids extracted from the germinating spores of Ganoderma lucidum
on the growth of mouse hepatoma, sarcoma S-180, and reticulocyte sarcoma
L-II cells were investigated, respectively. The dormant spores could be
activated by germination, and thus the bioactivities of the spores might
be enhanced. The sporoderm-broken spores could show much higher
bioactivities than the whole spores. Both the lipids extracted from the
germinating spores and the SBGS of G. lucidum had remarkable anti-tumor
effects in a dose-dependent manner, and could significantly inhibit three
tumors with an inhibition of 80-90%.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2002 Nov
Ganoderma lucidum suppresses motility of
highly invasive breast and prostate cancer cells.
Sliva D, Labarrere C, Slivova V, Sedlak
M, Lloyd FP Jr, Ho NW.
Cancer Research Laboratory, Methodist Research Institute, 1800 N Capitol
Avenue E504, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
A dried powder from basidiomycetous fungi,
Ganoderma lucidum, has been used in East Asia in therapies for several
different diseases, including cancer.
However, the molecular mechanisms involved
in the biological actions of Ganoderma are not well understood. We have
recently demonstrated that phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase) and
nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) regulate motility of highly invasive
human breast cancer cells by the secretion of urokinase-type plasminogen
activator (uPA). In this study, we investigated the effect of G. lucidum
on highly invasive breast and prostate cancer cells. Here we show that
spores or dried fruiting body of G. lucidum inhibit constitutively active
transcription factors AP-1 and NF-kappaB in breast MDA-MB-231 and prostate
PC-3 cancer cells. Furthermore, Ganoderma inhibition of expression of uPA
and uPA receptor (uPAR), as well secretion of uPA, resulted in the
suppression of the migration of MDA-MB-231 and PC-3 cells. Our data
suggest that spores and unpurified fruiting body of G. lucidum inhibit
invasion of breast and prostate cancer cells by a common mechanism and
could have potential therapeutic use for cancer treatment.
....and there are more.
Have fun at the Library!!!
More from Lynn Marsh:
And...here is one more. The New York
Academy of Sciences has their eye on this subject. Ganoderma
lucidum is mentioned at the bottom of this abstract:
Ann N Y Acad Sci 1999;889:157-92 Related
Update from Asia. Asian studies on cancer chemoprevention.
Laboratory of Experimental Pathology, Korea Cancer Center Hospital, Seoul,
In Asia, nontoxic dietary products
are considered desirable primary prevention vehicles for conquering
cancer. As early as 1978, investigators in Korea carried out extensive
long-term anticarcinogenicity experiments using the mouse lung tumor model
and observed an anticarcinogenic effect of Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer
extract in 1980. The results showed that natural products can provide hope
for human cancer prevention. A newly established nine-week medium-term
model using mouse lung tumors (Yun's model) could confirm the
anticarcinogenicity of ginseng that varies according to its type and age.
Subsequently, the ginseng was shown by epidemiological studies to be a
nonorgan-specific cancer preventive agent associated with a dose-response
relationship. The anticarcinogenic effects of vegetarian foods common at
every dining table in Korea and some synthetics were also studied using
Yun's nine-week model. In brief, ascorbic acid, soybean lecithin,
capsaicin, biochanin A, Ganoderma lucidum, caffeine, and a novel synthetic
2-(allylthio)pyrazine decrease the incidence of mouse lung tumors, whereas
fresh ginseng (4 years old), carrot, spinach, Sesamum indicum,
beta-carotene, and 13-cis retinoic acid do not. This result regarding
beta-carotene is consistent with the ineffective findings of the ATBC
trial, the CARET trial, and the Physicians' Health Study. In 1983, a
cancer chemoprevention study group was first established in Japan.
Subsequently, (-)-epigallocatechin gallate, cryptoporic acid E, and
sarcophytol A from natural products, and synthetic acyclic retinoid and
canventol were shown to be anticarcinogenic or chemopreventive in human
Despite the frequent consumption of tea
wordwide as a beverage and current experimental evidence of
anticarcinogenesis, including controversial results of epidemiological
studies, more systematic clinical trials for confirmation of preventive
activity of tea against cancer are needed. Placebo-controlled intervention
trials of dietary fiber are under study in Japan. In the past decade, new
triterpenoids were isolated from various natural sources, and its
biological activities were investigated in Asia. In the late 1970s a
comprehensive chemoprevention program was established at the Institute of
Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. Since then, many
retinoid compounds have been synthesized and screened in the search for
chemopreventive cancer agents. The National Cancer Institute (USA) and
China are jointly engaged in the two-nutrition intervention in Linxian,
China. The results of joint study of the general population and of
dysplasia in China
should stimulate further research to clarify the potential benefits of
micronutrient supplements. We need to clarify if there is a connection
between the lower rates of cancer mortality in Korea and the frequent
consumption of anticarcinogenic vegetables or traditional foods, including
ginseng and Ganoderma lucidum. The constituents of the nontoxic stable
dietary products promise to be the future hope for conquering cancers in
the coming years.
PMID: 10668493 [PubMed - indexed for
Storing Golden Chanterelles (from Debbie
I store my chanterelles in large sealed
Tupperware containers, lined with paper towels top and bottom. They will
keep this way for months. Just be sure to change the towels when they get
overly damp, and trim off any reddened areas prior to storage. Check them
occasionally for quality. You can also lightly sauté them in butter or oil
and freeze them to preserve them, for up to six months.
Ah, the lovely burden of too many
A Recipe using Helvella lacunosa (top)
The following came from an email message
from my friend in Santa Barbara, Bill Tomlin, is response to my April 16
posting about having found a batch of them:
You mentioned finding some Helvella lacunosae
recently, I love those little cuties! It has been a couple of years since I came
upon a batch but I recall that I made a fine omelet with them, shredded Irish cheese
from Trader Joes, shallot, and a half pinch of cayenne pepper. I used about 1/3
pound of them in the 3-egg omelet; it was Great!
- Have fun, Bill
When I tried the recipe, I had to use
chopped green onions instead of the shallots, a big pinch of cayenne,
herbed Feta cheese, and added a small amount of sour cream on the top when
I served it on a piece of toast.
It still tasted Great!
I feel that this would also be a good
recipe for using Gyromitra montana (Snow Mushrooms), Discina perlata,
Geopora cooperi (Fuzzy Truffles), (none of which I have other recipes) and
of course, morels.
Featured Mushroom, the Discina
perlata (Pigs Ears) (top)
I often find this mushroom when I am looking
for morels, and add them to my basket to be cooked later along with the
morels. I find them to be as good in taste and texture as a morel, but
more closer to the Gyromitra gigas/montana that I usually find at the same
time of year.
Here is the link to the Discina perlata at
the Mykoweb website:
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