Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Sustainable food: Shiitake

It looks like there are quite some people who come to my blog looking for information about Japanese food.

So....today's topic is Shiitake!

Shiitake is a kind of mushroom that is widely used in Asian countries. It's good to eat, but it's also good for broth.

People usually use dried Shiitake for broth. For several reasons, dried Shiitake produce much better broth than fresh Shiitake. It's also rich in Vitamin D.

With Shiitake broth, the plates can easily be vegetarian and nutritious. Plus, mushroom is very low in calorie. Healthy.

Dried mushroom is easily available at local Japanese/Korean/Chinese grocery stores. Dried are probably more reasonable to buy than fresh Shiitake.

Preparation: Soak dried Shiitakes in water (and not too much water) for hours to overnight. Use broth for soup and Shiitakes themselves are ready for cooking.

My recommendation is to make Shiitake filling for Sushi roll. Dried or fresh.
1) Chop them into pieces (size don't really matter)
2) Stir fry them with oil. (Mushrooms absorb quite some oil, so use enough oil) If you don't want oil, you can boil Shiitake with 3) and a little bit of water.
3) Add soy sauce and white wine (Usually it is Japanese cooking sake, but I substitute it with white wine.) and some sugar.
4) Roll the Sushi, probably with stick a of cucamber or egg.

Another way is to add 3) when you cook rice with rice cooker.

If you are interested in cooking them, Google Shiitake recipe. I found quite some information.

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