Mushrooms for strength.

Shiitakes

I found these gorgeous fist-sized locally-grown shiitake mushrooms at Putney Coop.
Perfect for winter chicken soup or just sauteed with butter and garlic, shiitakes are tasty mushrooms.

Shiitakes are also a good example of how much you can learn by tasting. To me, shiitakes taste meaty and solid and strong, and that’s exactly how they work in the body: they’re nourishing and strengthening on a really basic level. Shiitakes give sturdy support to the immune system—they’re often used to help people recover from viruses and cancer. In Traditional Chinese Medicine they’re strengthening tonics for blood and qi (indications include tiredness and frequent colds).

This is my favorite way to eat shiitakes for winter strength:

Slice up shiitakes and saute them in butter until they’re golden brown. Add salt and freshly chopped garlic at the end of cooking. So good.

(The mushroom’s name is sometimes spelled “shitake”, but the “ii” is a better approximation of the original Japanese.)

4 Comments »

  1. The Mushroom Lady said,

    March 1, 2007 @ 10:43 am

    Completley right. Shiitake mushrooms can help to boost the immune system. This is because mushrooms are packed full of great disease fighters including Antioxidants; Ergothioneine, Polyphenol, and Selenium, as well as B-Vitamins; Riboflavin, Niacin, and Pantothenic Acid. All of these great nutritients may help in areas of heart health, cholesterol, reducing risk of breast and prostate cancers, controling blood sugar, arthritis, body weight management, and the list can go on and on. There are nothing but good things a mushroom.

    The Mushroom Lady

  2. Heidi said,

    September 27, 2008 @ 9:49 pm

    Hello!

    You’ve touched upon a subject close to my heart…..sigh….mushrooms are so mysterious and yummy!

    I just wanted to add:

    If the stems of fresh shiitake are just a bit too tough, I usually put them in a mason jar filled with apple cider vinegar. They swell up and soak with the vinegar, and infuse it with all that good stuff (not to mention making it smell DIVINE!) and it’s perfect for marinades, vinaigrettes, etc…. This is also good for dried shiitake stems. No waste, and you gain all those valuable minerals and soluble goodies.

    And another tip:

    I live in Vancouver-area (British Columbia, Canada) We are blessed with a very large asian population here, and there is a wonderful plethora of super-markets that cater to Japanese/chinese/indian shoppers. I usually find wonderful fresh shiitake at my local “H-Mart” or “T and T” for very good prices. If you buy these anywhere else in the Lower Mainland, they tend to cost 5 times the price! I would encourage your readers to seek out more ethnic sources for such exotic fare. The produce is that much fresher, and very very affordable, generally speaking.

    Again, love your blog!

  3. Dityaa Dada said,

    October 24, 2012 @ 8:24 am

    Good day! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading through this post reminds me of my old room mate! He always kept talking about this. I will forward this write-up to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing!

  4. Dustin Vestering said,

    July 12, 2013 @ 1:59 pm

    “Mushroom” describes a variety of gilled fungi, with or without stems, and the term is used even more generally, to describe both the fleshy fruiting bodies of some Ascomycota and the woody or leathery fruiting bodies of some Basidiomycota, depending upon the context of the word.`^*,

    Pay a visit to our very own web site as well
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