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Oyster mushrooms are a fleshy, gilled mushroom growing in shelf-like fashion on wood that is a good food and promising medicinal. It has Fluted cap and resembles like a fan; ranging in color from soft beige brown to gray. Oyster mushrooms can be white, cream, yellow, or reddish brown; with a whitish stalk. Some say this mushroom has a faint oyster-like or seafood flavor, to match its likeness in shape to oysters. The oyster mushroom is highly esteemed for its tender flesh, velvety texture, and mild flavor.
How to Select
Fresh oyster mushrooms are available year-round in gourmet grocery and Asian food stores. When buying Oyster mushrooms, select those are intact and firm, with tightly closed cap. Avoid Oyster mushrooms that are wrinkled, slimy, ragged, or spotted. If the gills are showing, it's an indication of age, and they are probably past their prime. Discolored, broken and damaged Oyster mushrooms with soft spots should be avoided.
" Oyster mushrooms can be eaten raw in salads.
" More often this mushroom is cooked to bring out its delicate flavor and velvety texture.
" Oyster mushrooms are best when cooked. Sauté or fry oyster mushrooms in butter or oil for up to 5 minutes, or cook them with a small amount of liquid in a covered pan for 10 to 15 minutes. After the mushrooms are cooked, add them to soups, sauces, or casseroles.
" For easy marinated Oyster mushrooms, cover cleaned button mushrooms with your favorite vinaigrette, cover and refrigerate for 2 days.
" When they will be served raw, cut just before serving or wipe the cut edges with lemon juice.
" Oyster Mushrooms also make the use of pulses, beans and peas in vegetarian cookery more palatable and enjoyable
How to Store
Store Oyster mushrooms in your refrigerator crisper where they can benefit from cool air circulation. Keep partially covered to prevent them from drying out, but never store packaged fresh mushrooms without venting. Paper bags are a good storage alternative. Use Oyster mushrooms within three days.
" Protein quality is nearly equal to animal derived protein.
" Low fat content is mostly of the good unsaturated kind.
" Also contained are carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins B1, B2, plus minerals, especially iron and an antioxidant.
" Oyster mushroom shows activity against cancer and high cholesterol.
" It has shown activity in the following areas: antitumor, immune response, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antibiotic.
" Oyster mushrooms are best known medically for their cardiovascular and cholesterol-controlling benefits
" Oyster mushrooms are used to strengthen veins and relax tendons.
" Dried Oyster Mushrooms are high in iron which makes them a good blood builder.
" It has been found to reduce blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, stimulate the immune system and have anti-tumor properties Oyster Mushrooms are also a good source of riboflavin and niacin and contain no fat or cholesterol.