Shiitaka (Yap. 椎茸 、 香蕈 si: Take), also SIITAKA, I was an edible, Japanese forest mushroom (lat. Lentinula Edodes) unique representatives of the Kingdom of Mushrooms. Their beneficial and tasteful qualities are famous in all cultures. Eastern residents have used Shiitak mushrooms for two millennia to combat various diseases. It is noteworthy that this miraculous mushroom can be grown independently.
On the territory of the Far East, Shiitak mushrooms are also called as SIITAK. They are still known as “imperial mushrooms”, becoming the property of the peoples of China and Japan. By their origin, Shiitak mushrooms belong to the genus Lentil. Mushrooms differ in that they feed on substances of deceased vegetation. The average weight of the fungus can reach 100 grams.
The appearance of Shiitaka is represented by a hat and a leg. The hat is covered with a dark brown skin. The size of the hat itself can vary from 5 to 20 centimeters in diameter. The plates are sophisticated and covered with special membrane, which protects them from damage. When pressed on the plates, their color will change from white to brown. The surface of the hat is represented by small cracks. In young mushrooms, the hat is flat, which acquires a spherical shape with age. By this feature, you can easily determine the age of the mushrooms of Shiitake.
The leg is characterized by a light shade of brown. In size, the leg can reach from 3 to 19 centimeters length. The inside of the leg is fibrous. The pulp itself is painted in white and is quite dense. The taste of the mushroom is island with a pleasant aroma.
The initial territory of the spread of these mushrooms is Southeast Asia. They grow in mixed forests on the surface of dead trees. As trees, they prefer to grow on the Mongol oak, Amur linden and castanopsis by the pointed. In Eurasia, the mushroom grows on trees such as linden and oak. The fruiting period begins in the spring and lasts until the end of autumn. Shiitaka also has similar brothers among representatives of champignon. At the moment, the mushroom is actively spreading. Only in the 20th century they learned to grow it in other countries. In the 70s, Shiitaka gained separate popularity among Europeans and Americans.
It is quite difficult to confuse Shiitake with other mushrooms. An experienced mushroom pickens will not experience difficulties in identifying this fungus. However, novice mushroom collectors may have doubts when searching for Shiitaka, since they have similarity with dark red champignons.
Shiitaka also has small similarities with forest and August champignons, which have characteristic scales on the surface of the hat. The main difference between these species lies in the territory of growth: Shiitaka grow on the bark of trees, and champignons in soils.
Another difference is in the fruiting period. For champignons, this period falls for summer and autumn, and Shiitaka grows in spring time. However, even if you confuse Shiitak with champignon, then there will definitely not be harm from the second.
Use in medicine
For several centuries, Shiitake mushrooms have been actively used in the medicine of the eastern countries. Many drugs are based on products from these mushrooms. They allow you to deal with such disorders in the body as:
- Diabetes. The chemical composition of Shiitaka helps to normalize the production of insulin in the blood;
- Maintaining immunity. Polysaccharides contribute to the production of interferon, which serves to combat many diseases;
- Closereduced cholesterol. Scientists from Japan revealed that Shiitaka reduces the amount of cholesterol by 12 % during the week;
- Wrestling of cancer cells. The presence of such a substance in mushrooms as Lentinan prevents the development of cancer cells and helps to fight the disease;
- Treatment of heart disease and blood vessels. Thanks to a number of components, Shiitaka normalizes blood pressure and prevents thrombosis;
- Preservation of liver cells. Antibodies that are produced after consuming Shiitake mushrooms contribute to the restoration of liver cells and fight hepatitis.
Multiple studies have identified a number of components similar in properties to influenza virus in disputes of Shiitaka. Eating their food contributes to the production of interferon, which protects the body from various viruses and allows you to maintain immunity.
For medical purposes, tincture is made from Shiitak. To prepare it, you must grind the mushrooms and pour the resulting powder with alcohol. Within 21 days, the resulting substance should be infused in a sealed glass jar. Then the tincture must be strain and consumed one spoon three times a day before meals.
In industry, various extracts are produced, which include Shiitake. The resulting drugs are actively used in dietary supplements. The main active substances are lentinan and lentinacin with a group of vitamins and amino acids. There are also tablets, which are based on vitamins and minerals obtained from Shiitake mushrooms. In similar composition, capsules with Shiitaka are produced, which contain large concentrations of the beneficial substances of these fungi. To maintain immunity, they can be used as a biological supplement when eating.
People who have allergies to some components of Shiitak mushrooms, supplement their diet with great caution and in small quantities. Chinese scientists have formed a number of symptoms and diseases in which Shiitaka is not recommended to be consumed. These include:
- Bronchial asthma. An attack may occur from the use of Shiitak mushrooms;
- Children under 5 years old. Shiitake in children can cause stomach problems;
- Pregnant and lactating women. The product using Shiitake mushrooms is able to provoke a change in the hormonal background, which can adversely affect the health of the mother.
Despite a number of nutrients of Shiitaka, it is recommended to use them after coordination with the attending physician.
Shiyaki in dietetics
In the field of Shiitaka dietetics, they also gained separate distribution. Thanks to low calorie content and high nutrition, they are recommended to people who adhere to strict diets. In the cosmetological sphere, mushroom solutions are used to combat skin diseases, in particular, with acne.
Many centuries ago, these mushrooms were used to renew life and maintain youth. They were also famous for their antipyretic properties and helped clear the blood of harmful substances.
Use in cooking
The taste of Shiitaka can be compared with boobs. Dishes using these miraculous mushrooms are widely used in Asia. Shiitaka is the most popular soup of Miso. In Thailand, Shiitaka is fried or steamed. For the preparation of soups, use fresh shisitake powder. The dried Shiitaka retains their pleasant aroma, but they lose their taste. Many people prefer to cook food from fresh mushrooms.
The easiest and fastest way to make shiitake is frying mushrooms in oil with garlic. As a side dish, you can use rice, stewed and fresh vegetables. Shiitaka is also noteworthy in that they can be consumed fresh without additional processing.
Shiygiads differ in their acute taste, which does not like many Europeans in order. However, when thermal processing, the severity passes. Most often, only hats of mushrooms are used in cooking, since they differ in their softness and tenderness.
Despite a huge amount of beneficial properties of Shiitaka, their use must be limited up to 18 grams of dried and 200 grams of fresh per day.
Growing at home
Shiitaku cultivation occurs on woodfits, provided that the microclimate is created, similar to the natural. However, Shiitaka, which grew on the wood of oak in natural light, do not have significant differences from wild species. The most optimal way to breed Shiitake at home is to cultivate fruit bodies on sawdust, when maintaining sufficient humidity and temperature.
Methods of cultivation
In order to grow Shiitake at home, you can use a number of below methods below. In the presence of a garden plot, they are grown when using a substrate, which can be done independently. Shiitaka can also be raised on dry wood (beech, chestnut), which needs to be cut into small bars of no more than 40 centimeters in length.
In summer cottages, you can plant a shiitaka mushrooms in hemp. It is important that there are no putrid formations in the hemp. With the onset of spring, several small holes are made in the selected tree material in the order of the chessboard. Then it is necessary to soak holes for 3 days. Then the existing mushroom mushroom of Shiitaka is planted on the holes and closed with a wet wagon. A bar of wood with Shiitaka must be stored in rooms with high humidity or in dark places on the street.
If there is no way to use wood to grow shis, then you can take straw or sawdust. A special substrate is being prepared from them. Before planting mushrooms, it is necessary to disinfect sawdust or straw through boiling for 2 hours. The substrate should be as nutritious as possible, for this it can be enriched with bran and cereals. The resulting mixture is poured into a small container in the form of a container or a bag made of polyethylene. After cooling the resulting substrate, you can place the mycelium Shiitaka. Store a container or package in dark places where optimal humidity and temperature will be provided.
During the growth of Shiitaka, it is necessary to maintain the temperature in trends of 18-20 degrees Celsius during the day and about 13 degrees Celsius at night. After germination, it is recommended to lower the temperature to 14-16 degrees Celsius in the daytime and 10-12 degrees Celsius at night. To maintain a sufficient level of humidity, it is necessary to spray the germinations of water with water.
The fruiting period lasts from 3 to 6 months. After this period, the mixture must be replaced. If Shiitaka is grown on the surface of the wood, then fruiting can last up to 7 years, until the wood becomes suitable.
It is important that the substrate on which Shiitak is growing is as clean and fresh as possible. Otherwise, various pathogenic bacteria can settle on it, which will nullify all efforts to grow.