Mushrooms, toadstools, fungus. They may look alike but if you are an amateur, you should refrain from picking them in the woods. Many fragrant tasty species grow wild and add a pungent flavor to soups, stews and casseroles. White button mushrooms are grown domestically, offer less flavor and may be found in the produce section of your local food store. However they are not veggies. They reside within the fungus family. While certain species may be cultivated commercially, others grow only in the wild. Although fat-free and low- calorie, mushrooms do offer some nutritional value and add flavor and volume to many dishes.
Although you love their culinary value, don't run out after the next rainfall and pluck those little toadstools sprouting on the lawn for your morning omelet. Many are highly poisonous, and it takes knowledgeable pickers to differentiate. The better popular types around the globe are shitake, morel, oyster, chanterelle and cremini, which are flavorful, more costly and of-course favored over the white variety by discriminating chefs. (Frenchmen wouldn't dream of using our bourgeois white button variety.) Many species require cooking and should never be eaten raw, buy shrooms canada
such as the morel. Tasty large portobello make an ideal meat replacement and also a popular choice among vegetarians. The prized ruffle tops the list in its native France, and other countries pay throughout the nose to import them. (Those French. Nothing but the best for their discriminating palettes.)
While mushrooms presumably date back to the cavemen, the earliest documented usage goes back to ancient China, where mushrooms were consumed for medicinal and additionally culinary purposes. (Long before explorer Marco Polo trekked over to China.) Always on top of the-latest food discoveries, Romans enjoyed them as a food, but since all mushrooms are not edible, those inventive emperors employed food tasters to find out which might be poisonous. (Certainly not an enviable job. You never knew which meal could be your last.) Throughout history, mushrooms have been dried and after that eaten all winter, which placed them highly popular.
Asians in particular value mushrooms as a medicine, like the reishi, maitake and turkey tail, and they ingest them frequently for health concerns, either cooked or as a tea. With more than 65% of the world's production, China tops the list, then by Italy and Poland. At 5%, the united states is no slouch, cranking out 390,000 tons over a year. (That is a great deal of soup.)
Among many ethnic cultures, mushrooming or foraging is a popular pastime. Not just can you find some tasty varieties, but you get fresh air and exercise at the exact same time. Just ensure you recognize the ones to pick and also the ones to pass up. (And in case you are in wooded areas, ensure you also recognize poison ivy whenever you see it.) Charming drawings and stories throughout history depict fairies as well as other small creatures sitting under or together with toadstools, hence the name's origin. Were they edible or just furniture? No one knows for sure. Probably both.