Fistulina hepatica, (Schaeff.) With. 1792 ‘Beefsteak Fungus’, ‘Ox Tongue’                        (4 Photos and Description)

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FISTULINA hepatica grows on hardwoods, especially oak and chestnut. The  bracket “Beefsteak Fungus” or “Ox Tongue” looks like a piece of liver or a kidney and even bleeds a red liquid when cut. Found a few feet up from base of trees often located at the edge of creeks. Fruits summer through fall.  It is both parasitic and saprotrophic. Tubes are not attached to each other. Annual. 

Glutinous covering on cap surface embody enzymes that tenderize meat. Use it for that purpose and then discard – or slice and cook with lemon juice and put on pizza.Has lemony taste raw, but also can bevery bitter. Cooking removes the tannic acid it acquires when growing on oaks.

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Fistulina hepatica

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Fistulina hepatica

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Fistulina hepatica