Gyromitra esculenta is an ascomycete fungus from the genus Gyromitra,
widely distributed across Europe and North America and one of several
species of fungi known as false morels. It normally sprouts in sandy
soils under coniferous trees, in spring and early summer. The fruiting
body, or mushroom, is an irregular brain-shaped cap dark brown in
colour which can reach 10 cm (4 in) high and 15 cm (6 in) wide, perched
on a stout white stipe up to 6 cm (2.4 in) high. Although potentially
fatal if eaten raw, Gyromitra esculenta is a popular delicacy in
Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and the upper Great Lakes region of North
America. It may be sold fresh in Finland, but it must be accompanied by
warnings and instructions on correct preparation. It is eaten in
omelettes, soups, or sautéed in Finnish cuisine. Once popular in the
Pyrenees, it is now prohibited from sale for consumption in Spain.
Although it is still commonly consumed after parboiling, recent
evidence suggests that even this procedure may not make the fungus
entirely safe; thus raising concerns of risk even when prepared
properly. When consumed, the false morel's principal active agent,
gyromitrin, is metabolized into the toxic compound monomethylhydrazine.
The toxin affects the liver, central nervous system, and sometimes the
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Today's selected anniversaries:
The Song Dynasty in Imperial China ended with a victory by the Yuan
Dynasty at the Battle of Yamen off the coast of Xinhui, Guangdong
The search for the mouth of the Mississippi River led by French
explorer René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle ended with a mutiny
and his murder in present-day Texas.
World War II: A single Japanese aircraft hit the American aircraft
carrier USS Franklin , killing over 700 of her crew and crippling the
In response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, the United Nations
called on Israel to immediately withdraw its forces from Lebanon, and
established the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon.
Argentine forces led by Alfredo Astiz occupied South Georgia,
precipitating the Falklands War against the United Kingdom.
Wiktionary's word of the day:
1. (historical) A high government bureaucrat of the Chinese Empire.
2. A pedantic or elitist bureaucrat
Wikiquote quote of the day:
Do what thy manhood bids thee do, from none but self expect applause;
He noblest lives and noblest dies who makes and keeps his self-made
--Richard Francis Burton
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