Hericium coralloides

Hericium coralloides

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New pics added 12-31-2019:

Original Gallery:

Young Specimen:


Similar Species:

Medicinal Info: 

Hericium is taken by mouth for age-related mental decline, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, depression, anxiety, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and to improve overall mental function and memory. It is also taken by mouth for long-term inflammation of the stomach lining (chronic atrophic gastritis), stomach ulcers, H. pylori infection, diabetes, cancer, high cholesterol, and weight loss.

Hericium is applied to the skin for wound healing.

As food, the fruiting body of Hericium is consumed in Chinese and Japanese dishes.

How does it work?

Hericium may improve the development and function of nerves. It might also protect nerves from becoming damaged. This might help prevent conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s disease. Hericium erinaceus also seems to help protect the mucous membrane layer of the stomach. This might help improve symptoms related to long-term swelling of the stomach lining (chronic atrophic gastritis) or stomach ulcers.


Hericium coralloides is a saprotrophic fungus, commonly known as the coral tooth fungus. It grows on dead hardwood trees. When young, the fungus is soft and edible, but as it ages the branches and hanging spines become brittle and turn a light shade of yellowish brown.


Ratatouille with lion’s mane mushrooms

They have a flavor and texture reminiscent of lobster and they grow well in the summer heat. They add the perfect hint of seafood which brings layer of flavor much more complex and interesting than the few anchovies included in some ratatouille recipes.

ABOVE: What do these lion’s mane look like to you? They remind me of the “Doctrine of Signatures” an ancient Greek belief that herbs that resemble various body parts can be used to treat ailments.

Lion’s mane mushrooms are a healthy source of protein, vitamins, minerals and they are good for your brain. Lion’s mane extracts have been shown to enhance nerve growth (Park, Lee et al. 2002; Moldavan, Gryganski et al. 2007; Mori, Obara et al. 2008) and might be useful for treating degenerative diseases of the brain like Alzheimer disease. There have also been promising results in treating anxiety and depression with lion’s mane (Nagano, Shimizu et al. 2010; Shimizu, Nagano et al. 2010).

ABOVE: Recently I have fallen in love with the Indian Long Squash (pictured upper right) which tastes like a cross between an eggplant and a squash.

While zucchini, yellow squash and eggplant are traditional components of this dish, you can use any variety of summer squashes in all different combinations. Early in the summer I use zucchini and yellow squash, later patty pan and eggplant. Really what elevates a ratatouille is carefully browning each piece of squash and eggplant. This way they keep their own distinctive flavor when swimming in the juices donated by the tomatoes. The lion’s mane should be sauteed as well, be careful not to overcook them they can take on a slightly bitter flavor.


LEFT: Sliced veggies     RIGHT: Carefully brown each piece, including the sliced lion’s mane (foreground)


You will need:

2-4 squash and/or eggplant

several tomatoes- roma or any meaty slicer

½ pound lion’s mane mushrooms

½ cup freshly grated Parmesan

4 cloves garlic minced

1T finely chopped fresh parsley

1T chopped fresh basil

1t chopped fresh oregano

1 fresh bay leaf (optional)

5T olive oil


Cut thin slices of squash, eggplant and mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and saute the squash, eggplant and lion’s mane mushrooms in batches until lightly browned on both sides.

Slice tomatoes and season with salt and pepper, allow slices to absorb salt and surrender some of their liquid.

Combine garlic, parsley, thyme, oregano and half the Parmesan in a small bowl. Discard excess tomato juice and sprinkle herb-garlic mixture over each tomato slice.

Spread 1T of olive oil in the bottom of a 10×10 inch or equivalent size baking dish. Place bay leaf in the center of the dish. Arrange slices of prepared vegetables in rows or concentric circles alternating between squash, tomatoes, eggplant and lion’s mane. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake at 350ºF for an hour or until cheese is slightly browned. Serve atop of bread, pasta, couscous or polenta – be sure to remove bay leaf.