This section is a quick explanation of some of the identifying characteristics of Fistulina hepatica which falls into the taxonomic family Fistulinaceae.
s with all of these pages, they are NOT intended to be used as a key or diagnostic tool, but a guide of basic identifying characteristics so that you can make informed decisions and easy-access to other, more detailed resources.

Edibility Basics

Fistulina hepatica- The Beefsteak fungus

Looks Like Raw Beef . . .

Fistulina hepatica can often be seen from a distance, the visage of a hunk of beef growing out the side of a tree. The texture is also similar to raw beef and the fruitbody is somewhat pliable separating it from tough Ganoderma species.

A LOT Like Raw Beef
May be an image of food

When cut in half, you will find a streaked and marbled interior and the flesh will exude red liquid when squeezed, really driving home the similarities to raw meat.

Photo by Vladimir Parpura

White Pores

 Fistulina hepatica have a white pore surface with an interesting characteristic, the  individual 'pores' are actually individual tubes that are not fused to one another.  You can easily peel them apart.


Don't confuse this "Beefsteak" with Gyromitra that also go by the common name!

F. hepatica has a unique feature in that it is one of the very few mushrooms that can be eaten raw. In fact most people much prefer them raw to cooked. The flavor is citrusy and almost that of a meaty cranberry. 

More info on F. hepatica

Please remember to seek other sources for confirmation before consuming any wild mushroom

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