Calostoma cinnabarinum, Blood Mountain, Blood Mountain Wilderness, Chattahoochee National Forest, Union County, Georgia, US | ©Alan Cressler

This fungus, called Stalked puffball-in-aspic, is one of the most unusual fungi yo will see. Calostoma cinnabarinum is a gasteroid fungus (Boletales - Sclerodermataceae). 

In this fungus, the fruiting body is spherical, orange or bright red, about 20 mm in diameter, with a gelatinous, transparent and thin outer layer. Apical peristome has a cross-shaped when fruiting is in its mature phase. When mature, the fungi have a cartilaginous-gelatinous rhizomorphic base, which is dimpled.

As with all members of its genus, C. cinnabarinum is generally considered inedible by field guides. A study of the cultural practices of mestizo descendants of the Otomi people in Tenango de Doria, Mexico, reported that immature specimens of C. cinnabarinum were frequently eaten raw in the past, especially by children. Consumption of the species was no longer commonplace.