Mushroom Log: King Oysters

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Mushrooms occupy a strange place in our palates. Neither part of the plant or the animal kingdom, they are an oft-feared addition to any meal. Yet the little decomposers beneath our feet have tremendous health benefits for our bodies and for our planet. In the spirit of reviving the good name of mushrooms everywhere, Dear Food presents an in-depth look at the good, the bad, and the just plain weird of the mushroom world.

Latin name: Pleurotus eryngii

Other names: king trumpet, French horn, king brown, trumpet royale

I found some of these the other day whilst urban mushroom hunting in Portland (read: I bought them at an Asian market) and got really excited. Because mushrooms.

Mushroom Log: Oyster Mushrooms

Oysters courtesy of a.bower

Land… oysters.. ? Courtesy of a.bower

Mushrooms occupy a strange place in our palates. Neither part of the plant or the animal kingdom, they are an oft-feared addition to any meal. Yet the little decomposers beneath our feet have tremendous health benefits for our bodies and for our planet. In the spirit of reviving the good name of mushrooms everywhere, Dear Food presents an in-depth look at the good, the bad, and the just plain weird of the mushroom world.

Latin name: the genus Pleurotus

Other names: tree oyster, tree mushroom

Just the other day, I was walking to the supermarket and came across a recently-felled log in somebody’s front yard that had a big ol’ growth of oyster mushrooms on the side of it. As one of the perks of eating mushrooms is most people don’t know what they have right in their front lawn, I didn’t think the owners of the log would mind if I got rid of the unsightly blemishes for them. 

Er… if I want to keep that up, maybe I should stop writing a column about mushrooms…