The Chinese have used the shiitake mushroom for medicinal purposes for over 6,000 years; consequently, it has become the Asian symbol for longevity. This particular type of edible fungus is the second most commonly cultivated mushroom in the world. With its rich sources of selenium, iron, dietary fiber, protein and vitamin C, research has shown significant benefits in adding shiitake mushrooms to your diet.
Preparing Shiitake Mushrooms – Shiitake Mushroom Recipe Ideas
The shiitake is a versatile food that can be incorporated into a variety of dishes. You can buy these mushrooms raw, cooked or dried. Because they’re becoming more popular due to their nutritional value, you can find shiitake mushrooms at most grocery stores.
When preparing shiitake mushrooms, you want to cut off the stems because they’re too woody to eat, but you don’t have to throw them out. Add the stems to a veggie stock to soak up all of those nutrients.
Make sure to rinse the mushrooms thoroughly. They can be placed in a bowl of hot water for about 10 minutes to eliminate any residue and then rinsed. Now you’re ready to add them to your breakfast, lunch or dinner. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Add them to an omelette with veggies; try delicious Veggie Omelet. You can even add avocado to the top for some healthy fats.
- Create a brown rice or quinoa bowl with shiitake mushrooms, garlic, grated lemon zest and extra-virgin olive oil.
- Add them to miso soup for an extra kick of nutrients.
- Use shiitake mushrooms in Green Bean Casserole.
- Prepare lettuce or collard green wraps with a mixture of organic ground turkey, shiitake mushrooms and chestnuts.
- Make a hearty spinach and shiitake mushroom quiche.
- Create a flavourful sauce with marsala wine, shiitakes and ghee —
- Make a delicious soup by combining peeled garlic, shiitake mushrooms, fresh ginger, cilantro, lime juice, chicken stock and coconut milk.
- Use shiitakes in healthy Mushroom Soup.
- Create a stir fry with shiitake mushrooms, lots of veggies, and your favourite source of protein like cottage cheese.
- Or try Miso Soup with Mushrooms.
Shiitake Mushrooms vs Other Mushrooms
How does the shiitake stack up with other mushrooms? Let’s take a quick snapshot.
- Shiitake: Fights Infectious disease, boosts the immune system, promotes brain function, and serves as a source of B vitamins.
- Maitake: Regulates blood sugar levels of diabetics. May reduce hypertension and boosts the immune system.
- Reishi: Fights inflammation, liver disease, fatigue. Improves skin disorders and soothes digestive problems, stomach ulcers and leaky gut syndrome.
- Cordyceps : Has anti-aging effects and boosts immune function. Improves stamina and athletic performance, acts as a natural aphrodisiac, fights diabetes and improves liver function.