About our Mushrooms-FAQs
1. Which varieties of mushrooms do you sell?
We grow and sell four varieties of mushrooms-King Oyster, Shiitake, Pink Oyster and Elm Oyster Mushrooms.
2. How do we cook these varieties of mushrooms?
- These mushrooms can be cooked the same way as button mushrooms.
- They can be sauteed, roasted, grilled, broiled, baked, and so on.
- They can be used in soups, stir-fries, pastas, noodles, accompaniments, omelette, curries and so on.
- Our fresh mushrooms do not take very long to cook. A quick stir fry (till the water is expelled and cooked away) will do.
- In case of King Oyster, Pink Oyster and Elm Oyster - the entire mushroom can be used in almost any dish. King Oyster is eaten for its fleshy stem. Pink Oyster stems are very tiny. Elm Oyster Stem size varies from small to large.
- In case, the stem of elm oyster is not desired, the same can be used to make soup stock/broth.
- For Shitake cut off the stems and use the caps in the main food preparation. Don't throw away the stems! They make excellent broth for soups and gravies.
- You may give them quick rinse before cooking. Do not wash mushrooms before storing them. Please wash them only before cooking.
- Mushrooms absorb water very fast, so please do a quick rinse and not a prolonged one. Also, wash only before cutting/slicing and no after.
- Mos preferrablt, instead of a quick rinse, mushrooms can be wiped with a moist kitchen towel also.
- Our mushrooms are grown indoors in very clean, hygienic conditions, without use of any chemicals. They do not need to be soaked in any solution, salt water, turmeric, vinegar before use.
- The mushrooms do not need peeling either.
5. Can we eat your mushrooms raw?
While this is a matter of personal preference, and we have had customers who eat mushrooms raw and have enjoyed the same.
However, we do not recommend eating mushrooms raw as we feel they taste better after being cooked.
6. How do we store mushrooms?
- Once you receive our mushrooms, please refrigerate the mushroom bag. Please do not freeze mushrooms.
- Please open the bag before cooking. If you are not using all the mushrooms, please store the remaining unused mushrooms in an airtight container before keeping the container in a refrigerator.
7. What is their shelf-life?
- Elm Oyster mushrooms can be stored in the refrigerator for four days from the date of harvest.
- Pink Oyster Mushrooms can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two days from the date of harvest.
- King Oyster Mushrooms and Shiitake can be stored for a week in the refrigerator from the date of harvest.
9. How do we know that the mushrooms have gone bad?
- The best way to assess mushrooms is by first checking the backside/the gills. If the gills have changed colour (turned darker than what they usually are) that could be an indicator of it getting older.
- Another indicator of mushroom going bad is if it starts developing slime on its surface. If mushrooms become mushy or slimy then they should not be consumed.
- Also, please do not consume mushrooms if you are allergic to them.
10. How do we know that the mushrooms are not poisonous?
- Commercially cultivated edible mushrooms are grown from spawn of edible mushrooms and are completely safe for consumption. The grower knows the mushrooms he/she grows.
- In the case of wild mushrooms, there is a risk involved because many varieties of mushrooms have a lot of similarities and are very difficult to identify. Therefore, consumption of foraged mushrooms should be done with caution and after identification. We have seen that locals who belong to the area where the wild mushrooms are foraged from, usually know a lot about the mushrooms growing there.
- We at Green Apron supply edible cultivated mushrooms only and not wild mushrooms.
11. Are they vegetarian?
12. Why mushrooms?
It is very difficult to answer this question in short, as mushrooms are powerhouses of nutrients and the benefits to both health and environment are so many.
Mushrooms for Nutrition:
- Low in Fat, Cholesterol free
- Low in Calories. Aids in Weight Management. Aids in keeping food cravings at bay. Promotes satiety and reduces calorie intake while providing good nutrition.
- Rich in Dietary Minerals such as Copper, Potassium, Magnesium, Zinc
- Cu- aids the body in making red blood cells
- K – helps to regulate blood pressure.
- Low in Sodium. High salt intake increases blood pressure. Cooking with mushrooms helps in boosting flavour and using less salt!
- Good source for protein. Mushrooms provide quality protein that consist of essential amino acids that are not naturally produced by the body.
- Fits in most diets- vegetarians, vegans, people on keto diet, low carb diet or paleo diet.
- Rich in Vitamin B particularly Niacin, (B3) Pantothenic Acid (B2) and Riboflavin (B5).
- Only food in the ‘produce aisle’ to contain the ‘sunshine vitamin’- Vitamin D. Only non-animal source with Vitamin D.
- Mushrooms when dried in the sun get exposed to UV rays from the sun. They contain a provitamin-ergosterol which converts to Vitamin D when exposed to UV light. The drying must be done with the gills up, for maximum exposure.
- Vitamin D is needed for absorption of Calcium, helps in building and maintaining strong bones.
- Vitamin D rises from 110 IU (international units) to 46,000 IU per 100 grams in the sun! (research by Paul Stamets)
- They are rich in anti-oxidants: Selenium- Prevents cell damage and reduces cancer risk.
- Helps the immune system
- Useful in managing Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative diseases
- Ergothioneine or ERGO- Prevents cell damage and helps fight aging.
- Glutathione or GSH- Prevents cell damage and helps fight aging.
- Contains polysaccharides such as beta glucans that help in boosting the immune system
- Inhibits certain enzymes thereby reducing risk of cancer
- Fights bacteria. First antibiotic – the wonder drug Penicillin was derived from fungi.
- Shiitake contains Lentinan that has been found to boost the immune system and fight cancer.
- Shiitake also contains Eritadenine that has been found to lower blood cholesterol level!
Mushrooms for Sustainability
- Less land. Can be grown vertically. No pressure on land.
- Less water.
- Less electricity.
- Grows on agri-wastes which are generated in massive quantities annually.
- Nutritious, greater yield in lesser area.
- It has a low carbon footprint.
13. How our Mushrooms are grown:
- Mushrooms are grown from spawn (spawn is fungal mycelia growing on sterile grains). We take our spawn from the Indian Institute of Horticultural Research, Bangalore.
- The spawn is introduced into bags with sterile substrate. The substrate is usually agricultural wastes such as paddy straw, bran, saw-dust, compost, etc.
- The substrate can be sterilized by different methods. We at Green Apron use steam to sterilize. We do not use chemicals to sterilize our substrate (unlike many growers in India who do).
- The spawn is allowed to "run" in the substrate in a clean, dark room. The spawn grows throughout the substrate.
- Once the spawn run is over, the bags are ready for fruiting. Fruiting is done in a separate room and humidity; temperature and light conditions are controlled. There is no use of chemicals, pesticides or any fertilizers during these steps.
- Once the fruits are ready, we harvest them and sell them directly to our consumers as of now.