Birch boletes are also known as the leccinum family, one of the four large families of boletus, in which porcini are from. They are characterized by having a stalk that looks like it is speckled black and white. the black parts are actually little hairs, or “scabers” as they are called; a nod to their other common name: scaber stalks.
These are hardy, firm mushrooms, which require thorough cooking. I enjoy them fresh, but you need to make sure to cook them thoroughly, since, like honey mushrooms, they can make you sick. I have poisoned myself with under-cooked leccinums and let me tell you, it sucks. Please cook them for at least 15 minutes of more if fresh before you eat them.
Drying these mushrooms negates any possible gastro intestinal distress from my experience. An added effect is that the mushroom’s smell and flavor intensifies greatly when dried, like all boletes. The smell and flavor of leccinums is very rich and dark, and as such they lend themselves to cooking with game, red wine, dark beer, and other rich flavors. Read more about birch boletes.
Birch Bolete Recipes
Here is a recipe I made during the summer when there were many vegetables about. It has a few obscure vegetables and uses a rich parmesan broth as a base.