Last weekend, I stumbled across the beauties you can see in the images (above and below) and immediately knew I had to take some of them home with me. Unfortunately, King Oyster Mushrooms are a specialty and comparatively expensive (at least here in Germany). BUT they are beyond delicious, a great source of protein and loaded with fibre, minerals and vitamins. - Basically the perfect addition to a Vegan or Veggie Diet.
My highlight about the mushrooms is that they are actually super easy to prep and make a perfect bowl topping or Taco filling. Typically, I soak them in marinate for about 30 minutes, then fry them and they are ready to serve. Interested in learning more about the king of the mushroom? This article will tell you all you need to know, read on!
King Oyster Mushrooms (Pleurotus Eryngii), which are also known as king trumpet mushrooms, French horn mushrooms, king brown mushrooms, Kräuterseitlinge and Königsausterpilze, are native to the Mediterranean and naturally still grow in the Middle East and North Africa. The King Oyster Mushrooms we can purchase in the supermarkets in the US and Europe are all grown commercially. However, under very complex conditions. The mushrooms require a super sterile environment to grow and the precise temperature of 14-15*C to grow. If the temperature rises or falls, the whole harvest is ruined. This is also why they are so expensive compared to other mushrooms available in the supermarket.
Well, besides its impressive nutritional profile (see following paragraph), the King Osyter Mushroom has an amazing flavor profile. The mushroom typically grows a very thick stem and up to 10-15 cm in length, which is, by the way, the reason why the mushroom is named the "King" of the Oyster Mushroom family.
Other mushrooms that size typically contain pretty "wooden" stems. Not the King Oyster mushroom. Its stems have a deliciously meaty texture and an incomparable umami flavor. And even after the cooking process, the King Oyster Mushroom preserves a perfectly crunchy and deliciously meaty texture - ideal for all veggie-fans who need a meat replacement at any grill party.
From a nutritional point of view, King Oyster Mushrooms are amazing! They are super low-calorie, contain more than 3g of protein per 100g, a good amount of fibre and various minerals, such as zinc, iron and magnesium. Combined, this makes them a brilliant addition to any vegan diet, in which good sources of plant-protein are essential.
King Oyster Mushrooms have a deliciously fresh, mild and hearty flavor. King Oyster Mushrooms taste somewhat similar to Porcini Mushrooms as well as regular Oyster Mushrooms. In my opinion, regular Oyster Mushrooms can taste a bit chewy sometimes. King Oyster Mushrooms, however, are more crunchy and stay firm to the bite even after their roast.
I personally love the flavor profile of King Oyster Mushrooms combined with soy sauce but you can also serve them raw and without any additives. If you're interested in my Oyster Mushroom Base recipe, take a look at the image below.
You can enjoy the whole mushroom, nothing has to go to waste! Of course, if the bottom edges look a little dried out, definitely cut a small piece off, but nothing else. The meaty mushroom can definitely be enjoyed as-is.
If you like, you can eat the mushroom raw after you have washed it thoroughly. Alternatively, you can cut the mushroom, either in bites or lengthwise, marinate it in soy sauce and fry it in a tiny bit of coconut oil. It's so easy and absolutely delicious. Besides, marinated King Oyster Mushrooms are also a perfect mushroom for the grill.
Leftovers can be kept in the fridge and enjoyed cold as a salad side at night for example. To store the uncooked King Oyster Mushroom, keep it in a slightly moist paper bag or moisturized towel and place it into the vegetable drawer of your fridge. Depending on their age and condition at purchase, the mushrooms should be used up faster or slower. If they were super fresh during purchase, the mushrooms should stay fresh and crunchy for at least a week in your fridge. Alternatively, you should also be able to freeze King Oyster Mushrooms. I haven't tried the experiment myself yet though.
I personally recommend any organic Farmer's or Supermarket. I stumbled across the ones you can see in the images in a small organic chain called Basic Bio Markt here in Munich. If you can't find any at your local supermarket, try to find a Farmer's Market and just ask for them. I know at least for Germany that they are cultivated throughout the country.
When you purchase King Oyster Mushrooms, make sure that the stems look fresh, soft and moisturized. If the stems look dried out, you can be almost certain, the mushroom is old and has been laying on the shelf for quite some time. Besides, always try to look for organic mushrooms. Just will all other fruits, veggies and grains, organic products should be free from pes- and herbicides.
King Oyster Mushrooms are a wonderful meat replacement and an amazing addition to any colorful bowl, salad or, my favorite, Tacos! Combined with more veggies, they make the best Taco filling ever! Here are my highlights
- Oyster Mushroom Bites topped with Hummus or Pea Mash, Strawberries and Leek Sprouts (Vegan Scallops)
- Soy marinated Oyster Mushrooms as an easy and protein-rich side dish
- Oyster Mushrooms with Tacos
By the way, some people swear by the amazing umami flavor of King Oyster Mushroom. If you want to try their full natural flavor profile, use a tiny bit of butter to fry your mushroom and top everything with fresh herbs, a tiny bit of flaky sea salt and lime!
I hope you enjoyed this little little Foodiepedia article aka "All you need to know about King Oyster Mushroom" post. If you ever start experimenting with King Oyster Mushrooms in the kitchen, please share your delicious results with me. I am beyond excited to see your recipes. Tag me on Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook.