Ingredient of The Week - Crimini Mushrooms
Each week we will bring you a particular ingredient that we find interesting, explaining the health benefits and more.
Three Reasons Why There Ain't No Crime Against Eating Crimini Mushrooms
1. Immune Support:
- the phytonutrients in crimini mushrooms shift activity levels of your white blood cells! In some cases, they prevent white blood cells from becoming overactive and in other cases, they trigger white blood cell activity when more is required. In this way, they support balanced immunity whether your system is under or overactive.
2. Antioxidant / Anti-Inflammatory Properties:
- crimini mushrooms provide an excellent amount of selenium as well as a good amount of zinc and manganese. All three minerals are critical antioxidant nutrients. They are also a source of ergothioneine, an amino acid like molecule that has been shown to specificially help prevent oxidative damage to DNA. The phytonutrients in crimini mushrooms also work to block production of pro-inflammatory molecules.
3. Cardiovascular Benefits:
- crimini mushrooms rich antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients help protect blood vessels from damage. Extracts from crimini mushrooms have been found to reduce the binding of certain immune cells onto the lining of the aorta, lowering risk of damage and blood flow problems. Crimini mushrooms also provide important B Vitamins that help balance dangerous homocysteine levels.
Did You Know?
1. The names "white button", "crimini" and "portobello" all refer to the same scientific category of mushroom. Portobello mushrooms are crimini mushrooms that have been allowed to grow to full maturity!
2. While often thought of as a vegetable and prepared like one, mushrooms are actually fungi. Mushrooms do not require either soil or light in order to grow. All that is required is decaying organic matter of some kind. This is why many people encourage the purchase of certified organic mushrooms.
3. The best way to store loose button mushrooms is to keep them in the refrigerator in a loosely closed paper bag wrapped in a damp cloth or laid out in a glass dish that is covered with a moist cloth. The less surface contact, the fresher they will stay.
4. Mushrooms are so porous that if they are exposed to too much water, they will quickly absorb it and become soggy. Therefore, the best way to clean mushrooms is to simply wipe them with a slightly damp paper towel or kitchen cloth, using minimal water.
Ways to Enjoy!
1. Sauteed mushrooms and onions in coconut oil make a great side dish or a stir-fry addition.
2. Add finely chopped mushrooms to a pot of pasta sauce or chili.
3. After removing the stems, stuff them with your favourite vegetable or soft cheese.
4. Add mushrooms into egg dishes, such as omelettes, frittatas or quiche.