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Mushroom

A mushroom is the spore-forming part of a fungus.

A serving of mushrooms can contain 1/3 of a person's daily need for selenium. Mushrooms contain large amounts of riboflavin, plus decent amounts of niacin and pantothenic acid. Mushrooms contain a small amount of naturally occurring MSG. A serving of mushrooms contains about 10% of a person's daily need for potassium. Mushrooms are low in calories.

Types of Mushroom

Shiitake mushroom

This medium-sized brown mushroom has an earthy taste. It is primarily used in Japanese cuisine. Dried shiitake are often preferred over fresh.

Common or white mushroom

This is the typical mushroom used on pizza and generally in Italian cuisine. These mushrooms taste much better when cooked. They are commonly available pre-cooked and pre-sliced in cans and jars; the see-through jars generally have better quality. Also called: Agaricus bisporus, cultivated mushroom, and champignon de Paris.

Portobello mushroom

This is an overgrown crimini (brown) mushroom (head is 4"-6" in diameter). It often barbequed without the stalk, to be used as a vegetarian substitute for a hamburger. A common alternate spelling is "Portobella".

Straw mushroom

This is a small mushroom well-suited to stir fry and often available canned. Straw mushrooms look like Smurf houses.

Enokitake mushroom

This is a very tall and narrow mushroom sometimes added to soup, particularly in Japanese cuisine.

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