Penny Bun - Boletus edulis
Fruits Summer to Autumn
Found as individual specimens or in small groups
Grows in association with trees, particularly birch, beech, oak, spruce, and pine
Smells slightly sweet and nutty
Cap surface very pale brown, almost white/grey, through to dark brown
Cap can appear greasy when wet
Cap is dome-shaped, but often misshapen and with a thin white margin
Size of cap is 10-30cm
Sturdy barrel or club-shaped stem buff-coloured stem covered in white reticulation
Stem 10cm plus in diameter and 10-20cm tall
Has no stem ring/skirt
White reticulation more pronounced near top of stem
Flesh is white and does not change colour when bruised
Pore surface is white, yellowing with age, and does not change colour when bruised
Pores are circular
Spore print is olive brown
Penny Bun - Boletus edulis
Edible mushroom - novice
Other common names: King Bolete, Cep, Cèpe, King Mushroom, Bouchon, Porcini, Porcino, Penny Bun Bolete,
Scientific name meaning: Boletus originates from the Greek Bolites, referring to a superior mushroom. Edulis is a Latin word meaning edible
Season - when will I find it? From Summer to Autumn
Habitat - where will I find it? Underneath deciduous and coniferous trees, particularly Silver Birch, Downy Birch, Beech, Oak, Spruce and Pine
Description - what does it look like?
Growth: The Penny Bun is mycorrhizal, growing in association with several trees including Silver Birch, Downy Birch, Beech, Oak, Spruce and Pine. It can be found in small groups and individually
Cap: The cap is usually between 10 and 30cm. The surface colour is a shade of brown from very pale, almost grey-white when young, through yellow brown and reddish brown to dark brown. It is dome-shaped, and often misshapen. The cap can appear greasy, particularly after rain. The very edge of the cap is lighter than the rest, and often a white band at its extreme edge is visible
Pores: The pore surface starts off white and yellows with age. When sliced through, the upper end of the tubes are a pale yellow to off yellow. The pores are circular. When bruised, the pore surface does not change colour
Flesh: white, with no colour change when damaged
Stem: Thick, sturdy and either club or barrel-shaped. The stem colour is buff and the surface is covered in a white reticulation (net like pattern). The reticulation is most noticeable where the stem meets the cap. It is usually between 10-20cm tall, and can be 10cm wide, sometimes wider. It has no ring, or skirt
Smell: Slightly sweet and nutty
Spore colour: Olive brown
Possible lookalikes Could be confused with any of the Bitter Bolete (Tylopilus felleus), which is not poisonous but has a very nasty taste.
The Bronze Bolete (Boletus aereus) and Summer Bolete (Boletus reticulatus) are very similar. However, both are good edibles, with the former having a brown reticulation on its stem, and the latter lacking the white cap margin of the Penny Bun
Use as a food Must be cooked and can be used exactly as a cultivated mushroom. It has a delicate sweet, nutty flavour and dehydrates well if storage is required. Dehydration dramatically enhances the flavour.
It makes and excellent stock or sauce.
Also, the pore surface in older specimens contains a lot of detritus, so should be removed.
Use in herbal medicine The Penny Bun has been used to treat lumbago, and limb pain and conditions. It also has antioxidant properties
If you are suffering from any ailment or need medical advice, please see your General Practitioner
Hazards None known
Importance to other species Slugs and snails often eat these mushrooms. It is also a food source for the Red Squirrel
Always stay safe when foraging. You need to be 100% sure of your identification, 100% sure that your foraged item is edible, and 100% sure that you are not allergic to it (it is good practice to always try a small amount of any new food you are consuming). If in doubt, leave it out!