Thursday, February 08, 2007

Hey kids! Do try this at Home--DIY shitakes

MAN FERTILITY luckily has a high tolerance for my various projects, most recently growing organic shitake mushrooms in an old bathtub.

Fungi Perfecti has these great growing kits that are particularly satisfying now, when even my little herbs in the window have gone dormant. These babies spring up fast as, well, fungi! The kits come in a plastic bag with everything you need to start your own mini mushroom farm. Great project to do with the kiddies, too.

And don't forget, shitakes (like reishi--they sell those kits, too) are not only deeeeelicious, but medicinal as well.

Fun fact from

Shiitake Mushrooms Found to be Top Food Source of Potent Antioxidant

L-ergothioneine, a powerful antioxidant, has been discovered in mushrooms, thanks to a new analytical method capable of identifying this antioxidant in plant material. In research presented at the 2005 American Chemical Society meeting in Washington, D.C., an American research team revealed that mushrooms contain higher concentrations L-ergothioneine than either of the two dietary sources previously believed to contain the most: chicken liver and wheat germ.

Testing mushrooms consumed in the U.S., the team found that shiitake, oyster, king oyster and maitake mushrooms contain the highest amounts of ergothioneine, with up to 13 mg in a 3-ounce serving. This equals forty times as much as is found in wheat germ.

...And more good news, L-ergothioneine is not destroyed when mushrooms are cooked.

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