Cool edible fungus!

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This is an edible ascomycete ( Cyttaria espinosae) or sac fungi native to south central Chile. It is a specific parasite on the Nothofagus obliqua tree otherwise known as a southern beech or Pellin/Coiyhue.(that will be another post)  The sac has the wide open cells so the wind can easily catch and spread the spores. It is consumed mainly by the Mapuche people here and they call it “lihuene” or “quidene”.  I fried some up with eggs for breakfast and found the taste not unpleasant. When harvesting it grows on the branch tips and when it ripens it falls to the ground and must be harvested quickly before it decomposes.

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