While often grouped with vegetables, mushrooms grow from microscopic spores.
Plants growing from spores are called fungi, making mushrooms a unique
member of our diet. There are lots of different types of mushrooms grown
around the world, but on your local grocery store shelves you’ll
most often see white button, portabella, shiitake, oyster, and crimini verities.
Mushrooms are full of umami, the fifth basic taste. Umami (pronounced oo-MAH-mee)
is a pleasant savory taste imparted by glutamate, a type of amino acid
which occurs naturally in many foods including meat, fish, vegetables
and dairy products. The taste of umami itself is subtle and blends well
with other tastes, making mushrooms a perfect addition to many recipes.
Mushrooms are low in calories, fat-free, and very low in sodium, yet they
provide important nutrients, including selenium, potassium, riboflavin,
niacin, vitamin D, and more.
Mushrooms are commercially grown in virtually every U.S. State. However,
Pennsylvania still accounts for 61% of total U.S. mushroom production.
Beware of wild mushrooms. While some varieties are edible and delicious,
there are thousands of inedible and poisonous mushrooms. It is best to
never eat wild mushrooms without the guidance of a mushroom expert.
Taste how versatile mushrooms can be when blended into traditional meat
and vegetarian dishes by adding them to your next meal!
Check out our featured mushroom recipes:
Chicken and Mushroom Cacciatore
Pork and Mushroom Albondigas
Sautéed Chard with Mushrooms