Campaign Chunk Volume 13.07 Puffball Mushroom

A puffball is a member of any of several groups of fungi in the division Basidiomycota. There are over 32 species of wild mushrooms that are commonly referred to as “Puffballs”. Puffball mushrooms earned their common name as a result of their appearance. They are large and roughly rounded with a smooth, white exterior. Some species are small, golf-ball sized, while others, such as Calvatia gigantia roughly translates to ‘giant bald head’ and is commonly referred to as a Giant Puffball.

Puffballs are native to the United Kingdom and North America and they can be found in many regions of the United States, except the Gulf Coast and the Deep South. They appear in fields and lawns, oftentimes in fairy rings.

All puffball mushrooms bear spores inside the mushroom rather than through external gills. The exterior of the mushroom will eventually crack to release spores. This process is usually hurried along by weather, animals, and humans. For the largest of the puffballs, these spores can number in the trillions.

The puffball can be eaten by humans but requires you to correctly identify the mushroom and picking it at the right age. Their flavor and texture are enhanced when sautéed and browned in butter and is said to be a more than adequate substitute for tofu or eggplant in many recipes.

Hooks & Rumours

  • A children’s TV show requires a large number of the so-called faerie-rings for filming their program. They are willing to pay a decent amount for the location of these rings, as long as they are far enough away from civilization to not interfere with production and filming.
  • A Giant Puffball has been discovered the size of a car in an undisclosed location outside of Luton in the United Kingdom. Scientists are rushing to the area to study it and hopefully watch it spread its spores in an effort to understand just how it got so big.
  • An annual competition is gaining popularity where the giant puffballs are used as the main ingredient. These are all sourced from a single grower, who refuses to reveal their secrets to growing them and what makes them so tasty. This year the grower has gone missing and a new source must be found that meets or exceeds the competition requirements.
  • There are rumors abounding of a Giant Puffball that is a different color to the rest. Some say it is bright red, and other says bright blue. As of yet, this has not been confirmed, but the evidence is starting to be discovered that both types of reports are in fact referring to one species and now a rather large reward is being offered to find a viable sample.

Volume 12 (Creatures) of the compiled and updated Campaign Chunks is available at: ––Volume-12–Creatures
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