Fresh Organic Maitake
Maitake mushrooms are well known their unique appearance that loosely resembles layers of chicken feathers. This isn’t the only feature that earned the mushroom one of its other names, the hen of the woods, though. When prepared properly, organic maitake mushrooms exhibit a texture and flavor very similar to chicken as well.
Other Names: Hen of the woods, kumotake, dancing mushroom, Grifola frondosa, sheep’s head, champignon dansant, king of mushrooms
Origin: Yamhill, Oregon, USA
Shelf Life: Fresh organic maitake mushrooms are best when consumed within two weeks, but will retain their flavor for at least a year when frozen or dried.
Nutritional Facts: Maitake mushrooms may not have a huge variety of nutrients, but what it does have, it has in numbers. 100 grams of fresh maitake contain 280% of the recommended daily amount* of Vitamin D! This vitamin is very important for those who don’t get enough time in the sun, particularly for those who live in the northern hemisphere. Without it, the body will suffer from weak bones and low immune system and neuromuscular function. Maitake may even aid in fighting cancer and reduce the effects of chemotherapy by enhancing the immune system. It’s important to note that those who are taking medication to lower blood pressure should not eat maitake, as the mushroom may increase the medication’s effect.
Tips: Typically, maitake do not not require cleaning. If the need arises, however, simply use a damp paper towel or a soft-bristled brush to remove any dirt or debris. You can use hen of the woods in the same way you would use chicken- lightly fry it in butter or oil and put over salad or pizza or incorporate it into pasta or soups. You can also batter and deep fry pieces of organic maitake mushrooms to make savory and tender vegetarian chicken nuggets.
Learn more about Maitake here!
*Recommended daily amounts are based on a 2,000 calorie per day diet.