Blacks Fungus - What is it and how to use it?
No no no no, don’t worry, we aren't talking about any covid variant or any other worldwide spread disease. We are talking about Black Fungus or Fungus Mushrooms, i.e. edible wild mushroom that are cultivated or grown naturally in tiny forests.
Mostly they are dark in color (black & brown) and in the shape of ears. Sometimes they are also called tree ears or cloud ear fungus. Abundantly found in China, Nigeria, Hawaii and India, it has become a precious ingredient for most of the Chinese cuisine cooked world-wide. It doesn't really carry a strong taste or smell though it can take taste of dish cooked with it. It carries properties such as jelly like consistency and distinct chewiness.
How can Black Fungus be used?
- As usually sold in dried form, it needs to be kept in warm water 1 hour prior to use.
- These dried mushrooms when soaked usually expand 3-4 times their size. Small amount cooked once can actually be enough for whole family.
- Rinse and remove any unwanted substances from the mushrooms. And it is ready for usage.
- It can be used in various soups, fries, dumplings, noodles and in any dish you like!
What are its Health Benefits?
- Vitamin B2 in black fungus acts as a powerful antioxidant, protecting cells from free radicals and thus reducing the risk of chronic diseases.
- Relieves physical stress.
- Powerful antioxidant.
- Plays a protective role in breast cancer.
- Promotes gut and immune health as they are packed with fiber.
- Lowers cholesterol levels of the body.
- Protects livers’ health.
- Reduces blood pressure.
- Benefits intelligence and brain functions.
Nutritional knowledge about Black Fungus (let’s consider 7 grams)
- Calories: 20
- Carbs: 5 grams
- Protein: less than 1 gram
- Fat: 0 grams
- Fiber: 5 grams
- Sodium: 2 mg
- Cholesterol: 0 grams
Precautions for usage
- Not to be used without cleaning. Soaking in warm water is a crucial step before cooking.
- It should be cooked thoroughly to kill any bacteria that might be present. Boiling or raising temperatures might even increase its antioxidant activity.
- Foraging for black fungus is not recommended, given the risk of mis-identification or contamination.
- Buy this from trusted store or online.
- Do not hunt for these by yourself in the woods. You might end up eating some poison!
What should we summarize?
A prominent element in Chinese cuisine is black fungus, which is an edible mushroom.
It's usually marketed dry under the titles cloud ear fungus or tree ear fungus. Before eating, it should be fully soaked and fried.
According to new research, black fungus has a variety of health advantages, including liver protection, cholesterol reduction, and gut health improvement. It also contains a lot of fiber and antioxidants.
Although this fungus has been utilized in traditional Chinese medicine, additional research is needed to determine its effectiveness.