Bunapi-shimeji’s have a bitter taste when consumed raw. However, proper preparation makes them a delicious addition to many meals and easier to digest. The cooked white beech mushroom has a firm, slightly crunchy texture and a nutty flavor. They’re also full of umami- a pleasant, savory flavor- rich compounds.
Other Names: White clamshell, white shimeji, bunapi-shimeji
Origin: California, USA
Shelf Life: White beech mushrooms are best when used within ten days, but they can be dried for extended storage life.
Nutritional Facts: Brown and white beech mushrooms are virtually the same nutritionally. 100 grams are full of nutrients that help the body. High levels of Vitamins B3 (33% RDA*) and B5 (25% RDA) convert food into energy while dietary fiber (19% RDA) helps with digestion. Plus, 132% of the recommended daily amount of Vitamin D is crammed into these mushrooms, leading to better calcium absorption and stronger bones.
Tips: Store fresh brown beech in your refrigerator in its package until ready for use. It is often eaten with stir-fried foods including wild game and seafood. It is used in soups, stews and sauces. When prepared alone, brown beech mushrooms can be sautéed as a whole, including the stalk (only the very end needs cut off), using a high temperature; they can be slow roasted on a low temperature with a small amount of butter or cooking oil. Brown beech mushrooms are used in soups, nabe and takikomi gohan.
The Best and Easiest Cream of Mushroom Soup
(From the kitchen of Kris Brown)
Ingredients for 4 rich servings:
This is better if made ahead & reheated for the meal.
¼ cup salted butter
¾ cup Green Onions or sweet Walla Walla onions
2 cups chipped fresh Mushrooms- White or Brown Petites are great for soup, but feel free to substitute for shiitake, French Horn or your favorite wild mushroom (or a combination is better!)
2 Tablespoons Flour
1 cup Half & Half
1 cup low salt Chicken Broth
¼ teaspoon sea Salt
1/8 teaspoon black Pepper
1 dash Red Paprika
2 dashes mild Curry
1/8 teaspoon Garlic Powder
In a large skillet cook onions & mushrooms in butter over medium heat for 7 minutes until tender- stirring often.
Whisk in flour & keep stirring, cooking over low heat for 3 minutes.
Add the chicken stock & stir, and then add the half & half in a steady stream while cooking.
Add all the rest of the ingredients and then bring soup to a boil over med-high heat while stirring- DO NOT scorch.
Turn heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring often.
When reheating, a small amount of milk can be added if too thick.
Serve with corn bread or saltines- you can sprinkle the tip with cheese croutons.