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Top 10 Legal Ways to Experience the Magic of Mushrooms

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Top 10 Legal Ways to Experience the Magic of Mushrooms

By Mickey Z., Planet Green

Sure, they’re fungus. But all that potassium and selenium and B vitamins sure brings out the positive side of fungus. Mushrooms are delicious, loaded with nutrients, and serve as a low footprint meat substitute.

To cover all the bases about mushrooms would require a book, not a post. There are an estimated 14,000 types of mushrooms. Roughly 3,000 are edible and 700 have known medicinal properties. Also, fewer than one percent are recognized as poisonous (be careful if you’re foraging!). For our purposes, we’re going to avoid the poison and simply focus on the ten types of mushrooms (organic, of course) you’re most likely to encounter at your local grocery store or farmers’ market (or from growing your own).

10 Magic Mushrooms

1. Button Mushroom: 
Sometimes called a “white mushroom,” this is the most widely cultivated, harvested, and distributed mushroom in the world. Try it in this Golden Potato and Mushroom Gratin Recipe.

2. Chanterelle Mushroom: 
Golden in color and fleshy with a crisp, firm texture. Perfect with potatoes and shallots in a red wine sauce. 
In Season: Just about any time except for late spring into early summer.

3. Enoki Mushroom
: Extremely popular in Asia, enoki have a mild flavor…some say “fruity.” Ideal for pan-frying with tofu.

4. Maitake Mushroom
: Its name means “dance mushroom” and the maitake does indeed do a dance between its edible appeal and its sought-after medicinal uses (e.g. immune boosting). Stir-fry it with asparagus.

5. Morel Mushroom: 
Considered a “gourmet” mushroom (usually with a price to match), the morel contains a small amount of toxins and should not be eaten raw. Cook them Indian-style, with peas. 
In Season: The morel season for most of the United States typically runs from early-to-mid April on through mid-June.

Next: 5 More Magic Mushrooms

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Megan, selected from Planet Green

Planet Green is the multi-platform media destination devoted to the environment and dedicated to helping people understand how humans impact the planet and how to live a more environmentally sustainable lifestyle. Its two robust websites, PlanetGreen.com and TreeHugger.com, offer original, inspiring, and entertaining content related to how we can evolve to live a better, brighter future. Planet Green is a division of Discovery Communications.

31 comments

+ add your own
5:36PM PDT on May 11, 2013

thanks

5:03PM PDT on May 11, 2013

Thank you for the article. I really love mushrooms.

12:54PM PDT on May 11, 2013

Great article,thanks for sharing.I love mushrooms

3:49AM PDT on Apr 14, 2013

Thanks

2:46PM PST on Mar 1, 2013

The only other mushroom I like besides the white button(crimini(baby portabella) are too chewy) is the oh so tasty, and easily found in any patch of local woods is the Morel.

Soak in salted water for several hours, drain, and saute. They have a wonderful delicate flavor. Truly something to be savored and well worht the hunt.

1:34AM PST on Jan 22, 2013

Thank you :)

12:22AM PST on Jan 22, 2013

mushrooms are great thanks

3:08PM PST on Nov 21, 2012

I love mushrooms, thanks for the article.

8:51AM PDT on Aug 20, 2012

good to know

11:45AM PDT on Jul 5, 2012

Thanks for the info.

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