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Morchella esculenta is a species of edible fungus commonly known as morel, yellow morel, common morel, true morel, morel mushroom and sponge morel. It is a highly sought after and one of the readily recognized of all edible mushrooms.
Morchella esculenta has a conical or ovate, yellow brown to grayish brown color pitted cap, measuring 2-7 cm broad and 2-10 cm tall. The pits are rounded and irregularly arranged. The cap is light-colored throughout development, especially the ridges, which remain paler than the pits. The hollow, white to yellow stipe is 2-9 cm tall, and 2-5 cm thick, with a club-shaped or bulbous base.
Morchella esculenta can be found growing under hardwoods, in old orchards, woods, disturbs grounds and burnt areas in early spring . Parboiling and blanching Morchella esculenta can help remove the gastrointestinal irritant in the mushroom. Old fruit bodies showing signs of decay have to be avoided as they may be poisonous.
Morchella esculenta may be fried in butter or baked after being stuffed with meats and vegetables.