Ingredient Guide: What Are King Oyster Mushrooms?
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The king oyster mushroom, also known as the king trumpet mushroom or the French horn mushroom, is a native of the Mediterranean regions of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. It is widely farmed across Asia and is a staple element in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean cuisines. They are frequently used in place of meat and fish due to their dense, chewy texture.

With thick, meaty stems, king oyster mushrooms have an 8-inch length and a 2-inch diameter. Their tan or brown heads are topped with dazzling white stems. King oyster mushrooms have solid, dense stems that are entirely edible, unlike many other mushrooms whose stems are tough and woody.

King Oyster Mushrooms Buying Tips

Because king oysters are pricey, you should select them carefully while purchasing them. Select mushrooms with firm, clean stems. Normally, they are neatly trimmed and free of soil or debris, but if you see any, simply brush them off rather than clean them. Because the caps are highly sensitive, choose intact ones if you want a gorgeous appearance.

Smaller mushrooms are said to offer a little deeper flavour if served raw and thinly sliced. Because the mushroom's intrinsic umami flavour is released after cooking, size doesn't matter.

Culinary Applications Of King Oyster Mushrooms

King oyster mushrooms could be served in a variety of dishes as a seafood and meat substitute because of their robust, meaty feel. Their sturdy stems can be pan-seared like sea scallops by first cutting them into rounds. For them to cook more rapidly and to absorb the butter or oil in the pan when prepared in this manner, it aids to score the tops and bottoms of the vegetables. They can also be strung onto skewers, cut in half lengthwise, and cooked like satay chicken. And by shredding their stems with a fork and braising them, you can create a dish that tastes a lot like braised pulled pork.

They can also be diced or sliced and added to casseroles, meatballs, meatloaf, pasta meals, tempura, or simply split into slabs and sautéed. They taste nicely stir-fried, roasted, grilled, and pan-seared. King oyster mushrooms are often not served uncooked due to their mild flavour and subtle metallic undertone. But when they are cooked, their taste is released, and since some of their volatile flavour compounds are fat-soluble, boiling them in oil or fat aids in the flavour and aroma release process.

Oyster Mushroom Vs King Oyster Mushroom

Despite being members of the same botanical genus, Pleurotus, oyster mushrooms, and king oyster mushrooms are all separate species. Pleurotus ostreatus, often known as oyster mushrooms, has irregular ridges and grooves, short stems, and fan-shaped caps that can range in colour from white to tan to brown. They also grow in groups. Pleurotus eryngii, often known as the king oyster mushroom, grows on its own and is much larger, nearly cylindrical, and smooth.

Storage Instructions

King oyster mushrooms are frequently marketed in plastic packaging, however, this is usually not the ideal way to preserve mushrooms since the moisture they expel gets sucked within the plastic, causing them to turn sticky and rot. The best course of action is to start using your king oyster mushrooms as soon as possible. However, separate them from the plastic container and store them in a paper bag that is loosely closed within the crisper drawer of your refrigerator that is set to the humid setting. This will allow you to store them in your fridge for up to ten days.