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poisonous fiddleheads

Posted by jman123 MA (My Page) on
Sun, May 13, 07 at 14:13

I understand that some fiddleheads are carcinogenic and that they are possibly toxic if not fully cooked. Are there any fiddleheads that are toxic even if picked and prepared properly?(I think the fuzzy ones are but i wouldnt eat them anyway)


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

I hope you are wrong as I have eaten a lot of Kosadi (Korean word for fiddlehead fern).


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

I've heard that some are poisonous, but that ostrich fiddle heads are good to eat. I don't know which ones are poisonous...let me find out...

Okay, here is the link! :)

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.theheartofnewengland.com/food-fiddleheads.html


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

i've been picking fiddleheads for some time now, but i'm always interested in more information. please e-mail me with more edible and inedible info.i do have quite alot of info wild mushrooms!


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

  • Posted by okmoreh z5 Southern Tier NY (My Page) on
    Sun, Mar 15, 09 at 19:59

Fiddleheads have been eaten safely for many generations, but they need to be cooked fully. There is a toxin in them that is deactivated by heat.

There was an incident several years ago in which customers at a fancy restaurant were poisoned by fiddleheads that had been stir-fried and served so that they were still crisp - that is, not fully cooked. The traditional way of cooking them is to boil them.


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

I was told that fiddleheads are nontoxic untill the start to mature. That as long as they where still curled up tight you had nothing to worry about that they could be ate raw but when they started to open and mature they became toxic! Tom Brown discussed this in one of his books, but I can't remember which one


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

I was told that fiddleheads are nontoxic untill the start to mature. That as long as they where still curled up tight you had nothing to worry about that they could be ate raw but when they started to open and mature they became toxic! Tom Brown discussed this in one of his books, but I can't remember which one


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

  • Posted by
    Bruce
    (ikc@tds.net) on
    Wed, Apr 13, 11 at 18:03

Cook them thoroughly and drain the water.

I've been eating them for years and maybe I've been lucky to this point. Last night we had some more -- same plants, picked from next to our house -- just a new season. Little water was used this time and they were essentially just steamed for a few minutes. I may have drank some of the water, too.

I spent last night alternately hugging and sitting on the toilet. I've recovered well since then but it was not a pleasant experience.


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

I just talked to a Korean who knows about Kosadi and she says Koreans soak the fiddlehead ferns is water and throw away the water several times before boiling it.


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RE: poisonous fiddleheads

fiddlehead is meaningless. There are different "fiddlehead" ferns.

Matteuccia struthiopteris ostrich fern has edible shoots.

Pteridium aquilinum bracken fern is eaten but probably carcinogenic. Other "fiddle head ferns are mildly toxic.


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