These were the immature stinkhorns as seen in a massive, mulched bed under trees near the deserted, disco-rocking skating rink in Prospect Park yesterday afternoon. Steve Brill said they were edible but dismissed them as tasting like styrofoam, but I pocketed one anyway.
Cut in half: the beautiful weirdness. It even LOOKS like styrofoam! Middle layer like jelly. Some online sources said this would make the thing stink while cooking.
I peeled the outside layer, leaving a charcoal, mottled pattern behind. Immature spores???
Below, with the oyster mushrooms*. As a child I was taught never to combine in a single bag/basket, edible and unidentified mushrooms, as poisonous fungi could contaminate the edibles? Um...anyone? But while I had my doubts about the flavour of the stinkhorn, I knew it was edible.
I sliced it into discs and sauteed with olive oil, field garlic and lemon. Pretty much ensuring that it would taste of olive oil, field garlic, and lemon.
Not bad. Bit rubbery. Next time I will peel off the brown layer, too: it was responsible for the slight toughness. No stink at all.
Pretty oysters. Same treatment, with field garlic greens.
Maybe a dash of soy would have been an improvement. Very good otherwise.
* Visit these 2010 blogposts for more oyster mushrooms adventures and here for cooking with field garlic.
And my edible weed article for Shelterpop for more about odd things you can eat.