We all know shiitake, but have you already tried the maitake? This frilly mushroom is commonly used in Japan and China, and the tradition has it that it has medicinal benefits. The Japanese name translates to ‘dancing mushroom’ – one story about the origin of the name tells that people used to dance for joy upon finding this precious mushroom.
Yukiguni maitake mushrooms are now available at major AEON outlets in the Klang Valley. This post by Yukiguni Maitake tells you all you need to know about this fantastic mushroom.
What’s special about maitake?
Did you know that a mushroom is neither a vegetable nor a fruit, but an edible fungus? To keep things appetising, let’s talk about mushrooms, shall we?
Mushrooms really are superfoods and a great alternative to meat. Just as other mushrooms, maitake is full of goodness. It is also particularly rich in a few nutrients:
- Vitamin D that enhances the immune system, muscles and bones. It is particularly important for the growth of children, and rarely found in fruit and vegetables.
- Antioxidants that play an important role in anti-aging
- Fiber – maitake contain 2.7g of dietary fiber in 100g
Maitake also contains betaglucan, a polysaccharide compound which has cholesterol reducing properties therefore suitable for those with diabetes. It is also said to boost immune systems due to its high alpha and beta glucans. And lastly, it is low in cholesterol and sodium, fat free and contains very few calories.
Mushroom enthusiasts hunt for the treasured maitake in nature, but luckily for the KLites short of maitake bearing forests, they can also be cultivated. Yukiguni maitake mushrooms are produced in Japan in a facility that has been in operation since 1983. Thanks to the special technology, the mushrooms are pesticide and chemical free, and can be enjoyed without washing them before use.
How to cook maitake mushrooms?
Maitake mushrooms have a a delicate texture and an earthy umami flavour, thanks to the natural flavour enhancer they contain. They are a staple in Japanese cuisine but are now gaining popularity in other countries too.
How do I use this wonderful mushroom, we hear you asking! You can use maitake in any recipe that calls for mushrooms! The simplest way of cooking them is to fry them in butter until crispy or grill them. The maitake will remain crisp even when boiled or stir-fried.
They work particularly well in simple dishes like stir fries, pastas, omelettes and soups. For simple, tasty recipes using maitake, head over to Yukiguni’s recipe archive here.
But how about those fussy kids? Children seem to like mushrooms best when they are simply sautéed with oil and salt, in creamy pastas or breaded and baked. The stir fried egg and maitake also looks like a winner!
If you have a very young toddler, make sure you chop the mushrooms into tiny pieces to avoid choking.
The mushrooms keep for up to a week in the fridge. They also freeze well, so you can pop it in the freezer raw if you run out of time to cook them.
“This post is written and sponsored by Yukiguni Maitake.“