Happening right now on a rainy night in Harlem: smooth sumac (Rhus glabra) vodka shaken up with a lick of maple syrup (cocktail name...help?). Since I didn't collect and make the maple syrup myself I'll omit botanical name. But you should talk to our friend, Steve...
Puffballs (Calvatia fragilis) and meadow mushrooms (Agaricus campestris) sauteeing. In the oven, hen of the woods (Grifola frondosa) are roasting...
Puffballs and imposters, possibly a species of Leucoagaricus - yet to be identified.
Rock, not puffball. Yes, I did try.
Old exploded or stomped-on puffball. The purple gives it its one common name: purple-spored puffball.
Puffballs safely at home with a bonus of meadow mushrooms (Agaricus campestris).
The puffballs are probably Calvatia fragilis. They definitely are Calvatia.
The 'probably' in this case is not rash carelessness: there are no poisonous true puffballs, though there are a couple of similar-ish mushrooms that you should be aware of, if you're puffball hunting. Purple inside whenyoung means you have found a Scleroderma citrinum - do not eat. You want pure white, in cross section.
And the creepy silhouette of a mushroom inside, when sliced in half, means you have the button stage of a destroying angel, or death cap, Amanitas you really, really don't want to eat.
And, at last, lunch. I roasted the smaller ones whole, after peeling, then sliced, burning my fingers. They retain heat worsen' baked potatoes.
I love puffballs, though I don't know that the texture would appeal to everyone: buttery-silky, very tender, like the most delicate tofu, or, closer: roasted or poached bone marrow.