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The mushroom's history

Mushrooms are classified into several families, including edible, toxic, and hallucinogenic mushrooms. It is therefore critical to have a thorough understanding of mushrooms before selecting and ingesting them.
A mushroom is a plant that lacks chlorophyll and is exclusively edible in specific species. It always develops in wet areas.
According to “The Oxford Companion to Food,” mushrooms have been foraged since prehistoric times, with traces of puffballs found in early European communities. In ancient Greece and Rome, mushrooms, particularly truffles, were highly esteemed. Pliny the Elder and Aristotle both wrote on mushrooms, while Roman philosopher Galen penned a few words on wild mushroom gathering, according to Cynthia Bertelsen's book “Mushroom: A Global History.” According to Bertelsen, mushrooms, namely shiitakes, were probably first farmed in China and Japan about 600 CE.
Mushrooms, on the other hand, took a long time to gain on in the United States. The first mention of mushrooms in a cookbook in the United States is in “The Virginia Housewife” (1824). In the 1930s, Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup, a mainstay in innumerable casserole dishes, was created. Hallucinogenic mushrooms have a long history in human history, with archaeological evidence of mushrooms being used “spiritually” dating back to 10,000 BCE, according to Bertelsen. Many societies, including the Ancient Greeks, Mayans, Chinese, and Vikings, have been documented as having used hallucinogenic mushrooms.
The name “champignon,” which first appeared in the French language in 1398, is a variant of the ancient French champegnuel, which was derived from the popular Latin campagniolus, which means “field mushroom.” The term “Paris mushroom” stems from the first cash crops that were grown in the Paris region's abandoned quarries.
Agaric is derived from the Greek word agarikon, which meaning “edible mushroom.”
The Italian term “cremini” refers to a coffee-colored farmed mushroom, but “portobello” refers to the same mushroom that has reached a more advanced level of development. This last term is a pure linguistic creation from the 1980s, developed to increase sales of a product that had previously been deemed inedible and so removed from the production chain.
Several hundred mushroom species out of a million or more are consumed by people all over the world. It is thought that the fungus has been a component of human nutrition from the beginning of time. One of the first foods ingested would have been this. It was popular among the ancient Greeks and Romans. The Greek physician Hippocrates produced the earliest texts referring to their usage in cookery and medicine in the fifth century BC, while Pliny the Elder classified the edible and dangerous species known at the time in the first century.
The fungus belongs to the Fungi kingdom, not the plant kingdom. Because it lacks the ability to make chlorophyll, it must rely on “borrowing” nutrients from decomposing material from other living species.
The Greeks are said to have been the first to cultivate mushrooms, which were previously collected in the wild. The first “farms” in China date back to the 7th century. However, cultivation of the cultivated mushroom did not begin in the West until the end of the 17th century, in unused quarries in the Paris area.
It will spread swiftly in Europe and the rest of the world since it lends itself to artificial cultivation and speedy growth. It is still the most grown species on the globe today. New grown varieties are arriving on the market as a result of customers' rising desire in variety and greater knowledge of production processes. Truffles, chanterelles, morels, and other boletus mushrooms are increasingly being taken from the wild and sold dry.

Health benefits: Why eat the mushroom?

Because the mushroom is constituted of 80-90 percent water, it has a very low calorie value. It improves intestinal transit since it is high in soluble fibers.
The mushroom has more protein than other fresh vegetables, ranging from 2.1 to 3.3 percent, as opposed to 1 to 2 percent. These proteins include more sulfur-containing amino acids – methionine and cystine – than fresh vegetable proteins. However, their biological worth remains lower than that of proteins derived from animals. They do, in fact, lack key important amino acids (in particular in tryptophan). As a result, despite their high protein content, mushrooms cannot replace meat in the diet.
The fungus efficiently contributes to the covering of vitamin demands, particularly vitamins of group B, vitamins that play a role in neuromuscular functioning and skin health. As a result, with just 100 g of mushroom, we may cover:
24 to 29% of vitamin B2 – 29 to 35% of vitamin B3 or PP
21% of vitamin B5 – 8% of vitamin B9 – 7 to 8% of vitamin B1 – 5 to 15% of vitamin B8
The mushroom is also a good source of oligo-many and diverse elements, including selenium, a chemical that enters the composition of various antioxidant enzymes and performs a preventive role against cardiovascular disease and some malignancies.

Name of constituentsUnityAverage content
Dietary fiberg2.3
Saturated FA(fat acid)g0.09
Monounsaturated FAg0.005
Polyunsaturated FAsg0.22
Total ironmg0.82
Beta caroteneµg10
Vitamin Dµg0.2
Vitamin E activity (alpha-tocopherol)mg0.06
Vitamin Cmg1.85
Vitamin B1 or Thiaminemg0.02
Vitamin B2 or Riboflavinmg0.22
Vitamin B3 or PP or Niacinmg2
Vitamin B5 or Pantothenic acidmg1
Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxinemg0.06
Vitamin B9 or Total Folateµg23
Vitamin B12 or Cobalaminsµg0

Excellent carbohydrate source

Mushrooms contain a variety of polysaccharides, each with its own set of health benefits. The high water concentration of fungus, on the other hand, dilutes the quantity of these chemicals. An examination of the carbohydrate content of mushrooms on a dry matter basis (in dehydrated form) reveals that they are high in dietary fiber, mostly in the form of insoluble fiber. These are essential for intestinal regularity and the avoidance of constipation. They increase stool volume and weight by holding water in the colon, reducing transit time and facilitating evacuation.
The portobello mushroom is one of the few mushroom kinds that contains oligosaccharides. The latter, on the other hand, are present in modest amounts and do not contribute considerably to the dietary oligosaccharide consumption. Oligosaccharides are molecules that can ferment and benefit the health of the large intestine (colon). It should be mentioned that no research has been conducted to assess the particular effect of fungal carbohydrates in humans.

A beneficial mineral supplement

Phosphorus may be found in white, cremini, portobello, and canned mushrooms. After calcium, phosphorus is the second most prevalent mineral in the body. It is essential for the development and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth. Furthermore, it aids in the development and regeneration of tissues, as well as the maintenance of appropriate blood pH. Finally, phosphorus is a component of cell membranes.
Potassium is found in portobello mushrooms. Potassium is utilized in the body to regulate the pH of the blood and to increase the creation of hydrochloric acid in the stomach, which aids digestion. It also aids in the contraction of muscles, including the heart, and in the transmission of nerve impulses.

Zinc and iron

Iron is found in canned mushrooms. Iron is found in every cell in the body. This mineral is required for oxygen delivery and the production of red blood cells in the blood. It is also involved in the production of new cells, hormones, and neurotransmitters (messengers in nerve impulses). It should be noted that iron found in plant meals (such as mushrooms) is less readily absorbed by the body than iron found in animal foods. However, iron absorption from plants is enhanced when combined with other nutrients, such as vitamin C.
Zinc may be found in cremini, portobello, and canned mushrooms. Zinc is important in immunological responses, the creation of genetic material, taste perception, wound healing, and embryonic development. It also has an effect on sex and thyroid hormones. It is involved in the synthesis (manufacturing), storage, and release of insulin in the pancreas.

Excellent fiber and selenium source

Fiber and selenium concentrations are both high.
Copper is abundant in cremini mushrooms, while white, portobello, and canned mushrooms are also rich sources. Copper is required for the synthesis of hemoglobin and collagen (a protein involved in the development and repair of tissues) in the body as a component of numerous enzymes. A number of copper-containing enzymes also contribute to the body's defense against free radicals.
The cremini mushroom is an excellent source of selenium, as are white, portobello, and canned mushrooms. This mineral interacts with one of the most important antioxidant enzymes, reducing free radical production in the body. It also aids in the conversion of thyroid hormones to their active form.

A good source of vitamin D. B1 .B3…

Its distinguishing feature: it is a good source of vitamin D.
Vitamin D is abundant in white fungus. Vitamin D helps to maintain healthy bones and teeth by increasing the availability of calcium and phosphorus in the blood, which is necessary for bone structure formation. It also aids in the development of cells, especially those in the immune system.
Group B vitamin reservoir (B1, B2, B3, B5)
Vitamin B1 is found in canned mushrooms. Vitamin B1, also known as thiamine, is a coenzyme that is required for the creation of energy, mostly from the carbohydrates we consume. It also helps with nerve impulse transmission and encourages regular development.
Vitamin B2, commonly known as riboflavin, is abundant in white mushrooms, cremini, and portobello. Vitamin B2, like vitamin B1, contributes to the energy metabolism of all cells. Furthermore, it aids in tissue development and repair, hormone synthesis, and red blood cell creation.
Portobello mushrooms are an excellent source of vitamin B3 for women and a source of vitamin B3 for males, while white, cremini, and canned mushrooms are sources. Vitamin B3, often known as niacin, is involved in numerous metabolic activities, most notably the creation of energy from the carbs, lipids, proteins, and alcohol we consume. It also aids in the synthesis of DNA, allowing for appropriate growth and development.
Pantothenic acid is found in white, cremini, and portobello mushrooms, as well as canned mushrooms. Pantothenic acid, often known as vitamin B5, is a component of a crucial coenzyme that helps humans to properly use energy from the foods we eat. It also plays a role in the synthesis (production) of steroid hormones, neurotransmitters (messengers in nerve impulses), and hemoglobin.

Selecting and preserving the proper mushroom

Select mushrooms that are consistent in color, smooth, and free of blemishes, lesions, or damp areas. Avoid mushrooms with brown gills, an indication of advanced maturity, save in the case of portobello. The cap should be securely fastened on the foot.

In a paper bag, the mushrooms will keep in the refrigerator for a week. On the other hand, it is best not to put them in a plastic bag, which would hasten their decomposition. Furthermore, because they absorb scents readily, it is advisable to keep them away from strong-smelling meals.
Mushrooms, raw or cooked, may be readily kept in the freezer in a freezer bag after washing.
In the freezer, clean them, set them on a baking sheet or pan, and store them in a freezer bag. Alternatively, cook them dry or in oil before freezing.
In the dehydrator, slice them thinly, spread them out on a wire mesh, and dry for 8 to 12 hours in the dehydrator or a low-temperature oven.
Canned mushrooms have nearly the same nutritional value as fresh mushrooms, however their salt content might be significant. As a result, it is best to clean them before eating them.

How to prepare the mushroom, and how to cook it?

**Raw: To prevent discoloration, moisten the slices of mushrooms with lemon juice before serving raw.
**White cooked: simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, covered, in a small amount of water with salt, butter, and lemon juice. As a result, the mushrooms will retain their light hue.
**Stir-Fry: Heat the oil over high heat until it nearly reaches the smoke point. Cook, stirring periodically, until the mushrooms are golden brown and the water they have produced has evaporated. If preferred, add chopped garlic and parsley at the finish of cooking, which should take around five minutes.
**Grilled: spray the mushrooms with a little vegetable oil or marinade, salt, and pepper and place them under the grill (10 cm or 15 cm from the element) for four to six minutes on each side, coating them with oil or marinade once or twice during cooking.
**Preheat the oven to 230 ° C for roasts. Place the mushrooms in a gratin dish, cover with oil or marinade, and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
**Braised: brown the mushrooms, chopped into consistent size pieces, in a little oil or butter with salt and pepper. Cover and boil until soft, adding cream, chicken broth, or other flavorful liquid as needed. Keep the mushrooms warm, decrease the liquid, and cover them.
**Stuffed: For this recipe, use the caps of big mushrooms. Remove the stems, cut them coarsely, and brown them in butter. Bind with cream or broth and add breadcrumbs, chopped almonds, pecans, or other oilseeds, chives, basil, or tarragon. Season with salt and paprika to taste. Coat the caps with olive oil, then stuff them with the filling and top with grated Parmesan cheese. Grill for 5 minutes before serving. Stuff them with an oyster or clam that has been seasoned with grated horseradish, mayonnaise, and a few drops of Worcestershire sauce. Alternatively, puree the feet with garlic, parsley, a little cream, and goat cheese in a blender. Stuff the caps with the prepared and grill them;
**To make the vinaigrette or french dressing, sauté the chopped garlic in olive oil, then add the sliced mushrooms and simmer, stirring constantly. Cook for a minute or two after adding a few tablespoons of wine vinegar and white wine, then season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or cold.
**In mushroom duxelles, this method may be used to make sauces and fillings, as well as to prepare meat and fish. It may be used to any recipe where a mushroom taste is desired. Chop an onion or shallots finely and brown in a butter and olive oil combination. To extract the juice, cut the mushrooms and squeeze them in muslin or cheesecloth. Season with freshly ground nutmeg, salt, and pepper, then add them to the onion (or shallots) and simmer until all the liquid has evaporated. Allow to cool before storing in an airtight jar in the refrigerator.
**Stuffings, omelets, flans, and quiches are just a few examples. **In a sandwich with peppers, eggplants, and onions; in sauces to complement meat or fish Separately grill the mushrooms and veggies. Use portobello hats for this, since they have a meaty texture; **in a salad, marinate them overnight with pieces of cauliflower, sliced carrots, and sliced green onions in a vinaigrette. Serve with a few pieces of nuts if preferred; **In soups, use milk, yogurt, or cream. Before integrating the dried mushrooms into the mixture, finely grind them to get a creamy texture.
In this barley soup, which Jews consume during the Hannukah holiday. Sauté the onion and celery in oil with fresh and dried mushrooms that have been soaked ahead of time. Add pearl barley, tomatoes, and chicken, beef, or veggie broth after around ten minutes. Cook for 45 minutes, or until the barley is soft. Serve with chopped parsley and dill, salt and pepper.

Fungus contraindications and allergies

If handled incorrectly, fresh mushrooms can contain bacteria that can contribute to the formation of botulism-causing toxins. Without changing the look, smell, or taste of the mushrooms, consuming a damaged product might result in significant food poisoning. Fresh mushrooms should be wrapped in a perforated plastic film to facilitate air circulation and kept refrigerated.
When mushrooms are placed in hermetically sealed containers (e.g., vacuum sealed packages) that have not been sterilized, they should be kept chilled below 4 ° C and an expiration date documented and observed.

Poisonous mushrooms

Picking mushrooms typically coincides with the approach of fall and the fragrances of the woods, but it often coincides, regrettably, with poisoning and intestinal problems. Knowing the poisonous fungal species might have significant, even fatal repercussions if you don't know what they are. I'd want to make one point.

What are deadly mushrooms and how can you spot them?

To prevent picking up a poisonous mushroom, take it up with a little guide in hand, or with your smartphone for the most connected, at first. This will prevent you from a slew of potentially fatal health issues.
Several dangerous fungus have been identified:

Spring and vireuse Amanita phalloid

Amanita phalloid

Because of its similarity to the verdant russula, phalloid amanitis is responsible for 90% of severe poisoning cases. It is quite common and may be found in many types of woodlands. Its cap is yellowish green, slightly sticky, and covered with thin white lamellae (3 to 15 cm). The foot is whitish, with a ring at the top and a volva (= membrane that envelops the mushrooms when they are young).
The spring amanita is similar to the phalloid, with the exception that its cap is white and smooth.
The virose amanita has a longer foot and a less conical crown than the spring amanita (5 to 10 cm in diameter). Furthermore, its volva is thicker.

The small lepiotes

the small lepiotes

The little lepiotes are less well-known, with a conical hat coated in brown scales (diameter less than 10 cm), delicate white blades, a thin and silky foot with a ring, and white to gray meat with a pungent stench reminiscent of rotting radish or crumpled geranium leaves.
They are similar to the coulemelle (size and cap greater than 10 cm and ring which slides along the foot).

The coiled paxillae

The coiled paxillae

Coiled paxillae are found in meadows and under deciduous and coniferous trees. Their hats are dark, sleek, hollowed down in the middle, and have tight blades beneath that sear when scraped and become black when cooked. Even eaten raw, it is lethal, and when cooked, it is extremely poisonous.

Poisonous mushrooms: signs and symptoms

Poisoning symptoms are simple to spot after ingesting toxic or fatal fungus, however they vary depending on the fungi involved:
tremors, perspiration, stomach and abdominal pain; visual disturbances and dizziness; nausea, vomiting, diarrhea; tremors, sweating; stomach and abdominal pain; visual disturbances and dizziness;
The deterioration of the liver occurs 2-3 days after consumption in phalloid syndrome.
Poisonings caused by poisonous fungus are typically mild and last less than 6 hours, however they can last anywhere from 15 minutes to 3 hours.
Poisonings with a long incubation period (more than 6 hours after consumption), such as those caused by phalloid amanita, are the most dangerous. Ingestion of a lethal fungus like phalloid amanita has serious health consequences:
The liver will be severely damaged, necessitating a transplant.
The kidneys can also be harmed and cease to function, necessitating dialysis (although this is no longer the case with toxic cortinary-type fungus).
The most severe instances might result in death.

Some tips on how to avoid harmful fungus

It's essential to follow a few guidelines to prevent being poisoned by consuming a rotten mushroom:
Only select mushrooms that you are completely familiar with.
If you're new to this, have your picking examined by a pharmacist who is an expert in the field.
Sort the species into separate bags.
Refrigerate the mushrooms in a separate container and eat them within 2 days, preferably the same day for best quality.
Don't consume mushrooms from the wild too frequently or in huge numbers (they concentrate heavy metals). It's worth noting, however, that even non-organic commercial mushrooms contain 35.6 percent pesticide residues (source: NGO Générations futures, June 6, 2019 study).
Finally, after choosing, wash your hands well.
Following a picking, contact a poison control center as soon as the first indications occur.