I was trolling around the internet today and came across some interesing mushroom factoids. I though I would put the information on here....
Mushrooms: The New Superfood
Mushrooms have long been recognised for their health benefits. Medicinal mushrooms have been used in China and Japan for more than 3,000 years to boost immunity and fight diseases such as cancer. Now word is out that mushrooms are the new superfoods. From shiitake, oyster to portabello, we reveal the world of fungi and what?s good about them.
Shiitake Benefits: The second most commonly produced mushroom in the world, shiitake has both medicinal and food value. It provides noteworthy benefits for ulcers, high or low blood pressure, liver problems, allergies and autoimmune diseases. When eaten, it yields 26% protein by dry weight, carbohydrates, fiber, linoleic acid, vitamins B2, C and D, ergosterol and possesses abundant quantities of calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iron and all the essential amino acids needed in our diet. It has been used to treat nutritional deficiencies and liver ailments. Flavour: Fresh mushrooms have firm caps and light brown meaty flesh with a pleasant and distinct flavour that lingers on the tongue. Uses: Add to sauces and stocks, wrap in foil with fish, white meat or vegetables, or chop and use in stuffings for poultry, fish or meat.Seasonal availability: All year.
Oyster Benefits: Oyster mushrooms contain carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins B1, B2, plus minerals, especially iron and an antioxident. This mushroom shows activity against cancer and helps lower cholesterol. It has shown activity in the following areas: anti-tumour, immune response, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antibiotic.Flavour: They have a subtle flavour and a chewy texture. Uses: Add to pasta recipes, risotto or stir-fry with other types of mushroom.Seasonal availability: All year.
Maitake Benefits: A medicinal mushroom, Maitake helps to lower high blood pressure, and also reduces blood and liver cholesterol and triglycerides, thus reducing risk of stroke and heart disease.
Crimini and Portabell Benefits: While these two are from the same mushroom family, the portabello is left to grow longer and larger. These mushrooms contain a variety of B complex vitamins, are an excellent source of riboflavin, pantothenic acid and niacin, are a very good source of thiamine, vitamin B6 and a good source of folate. Selenium, lysine, protein, zinc, copper, manganese and iron are more benefits of eating this mushroom.Flavour: These creamy yellow mushrooms have a good flavour and a velvet-like texture. Uses: Add cooked ceps to omelettes, pasta or add to stir-fries and mixed mushroom dishes.Seasonal availability: All year.
Porcini Benefits: Porcinci are wild mushrooms native to the Alpine regions of Italy and France, which contain niacin, potassium, selenium and protein.Flavour: They have a distinctive aroma and rich flavour. Uses: Soaked dried porcini can be added to a variety of savoury dishes in the same way as fresh mushrooms. They are particularly good in pasta dishes, risotto, soups, stews and omelettes. Porcini go particularly well with garlic or fresh herbs such as flat leaf parsley or thyme. The soaking water can be included in risottos, stews and soups.Seasonal availability: Fresh porcini are only available in late summer and autumn so the dried variety is more commonly used.
Chanterelle Benefits: Chanterelle mushrooms contain protein, vitamin D and vitamin B, including riboflavin, niacin and thiamine. Minerals include potassium, copper and selenium. Flavour: They have a firm flesh with a subtle, fruity flavour. Uses: Serve with scrambled eggs for a tasty breakfast, add to creamy pasta sauces or simply serve on toast.Seasonal availability: All year.
Morel Benefits: Morel mushrooms contain protein, vitamin D and vitamin B, including riboflavin, niacin and thiamine. Minerals include potassium, copper and selenium.Uses: Morels shouldn't be eaten raw. They contain toxic helvellic acid that disappears with cooking. They are a natural pair to fava beans and peas, a delicious medley served over pasta or toast. Add to rich meats and fish.Seasonal availability: Spring
Wood Ear Benefits: Wood Ear has shown anti-tumour and cholesterol-lowering properties. They contain Vitamin B, C, D and iron.Flavour: It has very little flavor, but is used mainly for its firm, gelatinous texture and for the colour. Uses: Add to soups. Seasonal availability: The dried variety are available all year.
Reishi Benefits: Reishi mushrooms have been used as a cure for disease for over 2,000 years. They are known to increase vitality, improve coronary arteries, inhibit platelet aggregation, normalise blood pressure, relieve stress and asthma, and prevent and treat certain types of cancer and other degenerative diseases. Reishi also works as an antihistamine by inhibiting agents that cause cold symptoms, hay fever, asthma, and allergies and promotes respiratory health.