Mushrooms Are King in 2024

Words: Shamim de Brún
Images: Unsplash

Words: Shamim de Brún
Images: Unsplash

I don’t know who needs to hear this, but we should all bless our palate and eat some mushrooms. Imagine walking into a butcher shop, but instead of rows of meat, you start to realise…what’s with all the mushrooms? They’re everywhere! Mushroom sausages, mushroom chicken wings, mushroom bacon, mushroom minced meat, even mushroom calamari. Welcome to the future of sustainable and vegan cooking, where mushroom butchery is centre stage and in the spotlight.

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Variety is the Spice of Life

Funghi lovers know well that mushrooms are all about wild flavours and intriguing aromas. Take the classic Italian truffle, for example — it’s got this deep, earthy smell that can jazz up any dish. European mushrooms like these are real champs in the kitchen, giving you endless ways to get creative with your cooking. You could whip up a new mushroom dish everyday and still be eager for more. And when I get my shopping just right, that’s exactly what I do.

This affection is, at times, controversial. Mushrooms can be a misunderstood food. People can be scared of them because they associate them on an unconscious level with some fairly dark subject matter (think ‘The Last Of Us’). 

Others eagerly attribute their distaste to the fungus’s taste and texture. I’d argue it’s almost always a case of misplaced blame; just like our parents overcooked steak and served soggy fish, they also probably didn’t know how to cook mushrooms. 

This was certainly my experience. 

Like vegetables, there’s a mushroom out there for everyone—it’s just about finding your match. For many, the classic button mushroom has been a game-changer. It’s the kind of fungi that can convert sceptics into devoted fans, one dish at a time. If you’re still on the fence about mushrooms, I dare you to try them out. Whether it’s the hearty texture of portobellos in a stew or the delicate slices of buttons in a salad, these European delights are dynamic stars in the kitchen. Why blame the mushroom when it could be the recipe that needs tweaking? Give them a chance and they might just surprise you!

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