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Recipe correction of the year

Poisonousmushroom_2 Sometimes you run across something so completely amazing that you have to share it with everyone you come in contact with, at least for a day or two. Fortunately that's what the Web is for. And so, I give you this marvelous recipe correction, which was posted on the website Regret the Error under their round-up titled, "Crunks 2008: The Year In Media Errors and Corrections."

Best Recipe Error
A report from Reuters:

Celebrity chef Antony Worrall Thompson has apologized after accidentally recommending a potentially deadly plant in organic salads.
The chef and TV presenter said in a magazine article that the weed henbane, also known as stinking nightshade, made an excellent addition to summertime meals...
Henbane, or Hyoscyamus niger, is toxic and can cause hallucinations, convulsions, vomiting and, in extreme cases, death.
Worrall Thompson, who was discussing his passion for organic foods, had confused the plant with another of a similar name.
The magazine "Healthy & Organic Living" printed an urgent warning: "Henbane is a very toxic plant and should never be eaten. As always, check with an expert when foraging or collecting wild plants."
Henbane, a close relative of deadly nightshade, was used by Dr. Crippen to kill his wife in 1910, and is thought to have been the main ingredient in the poison Romeo took in Shakespeare's play "Romeo and Juliet."
The chef had intended to refer to fat hen, a weed rich in vitamin C, that is edible, media reports said...
Worrall Thompson was reported in the media as saying the confusion had been "a bit embarrassing."

If that didn't brighten your day enough, you can resort to the always-reliable "Hamster on a piano."

-- Jessica Gelt

Photo caption: Looks can be deceiving: this mushroom, from the family Boletus, is poisonous, while a look-alike cousin is delicious.

Photo credit: Craig Ligibel

 
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There is frequent confusion over the identity of plants, sometimes with very unpleasant results.

When I was Poison Garden Warden at the Alnwick Garden, we heard numerous stories of people eating daffodil bulbs because they thought they were onions.

And Worrall Thompson is not the first to have an error published.

A letter to the Gardeners Chronicle for 1846 from the gardener of the Earl of Shrewsbury at Alton Towers, Staffordshire, England, told how rhubarb leaves had been used there for many years as a vegetable. Then he wrote again to correct it and say it was the leaf-stalks he meant. People have died from eating rhubarb leaves.

The Poison Garden website has information on lots of plants and the incidents they have caused.

In the early 1970s, one of the home magazines -- I think it was Good Housekeeping -- published a recipe for making a dulce de leche sauce by putting an unopened can of evaporated milk in the microwave.

And then there was Gourmet magazine's twenty-fifth anniversary cake recipe ... that left out the baking powder.

And then there was the time that the L.A. Times Food section accidentally put an amanita phalloides on its cover, illustrating an article on foraging...


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