How to cook king oyster mushrooms
Where to Buy Oyster Mushrooms. The king trumpet, eryngii or king oyster mushroom is the largest of the oyster mushroom genus and, unlike other oyster mushrooms, their stalks aren’t tough and woody to eat.
Instead, they’re hailed for their meaty texture and umami flavour. Native to the Mediterranean, they are perhaps most commonly used in Asian cuisines such as Chinese, Japanese and Korean; three countries where the mushroom is cultivated on a large scale.
This impressive mushroom averages between 10–15cm in length, has a long shelf life in the fridge (roughly one week) and doesn’t lose its shape when cooked.
The texture is sometimes likened to abalone or scallops, which makes them an interesting option for vegetarians and are often billed as ‘mushroom steaks’ or ‘vegan scallops’.
What to look for when buying king oyster mushrooms
When buying king oysters, you want to select them carefully as they don’t come cheap! Choose mushrooms with firm, unblemished stems.
They usually come nicely trimmed and free from dirt or soil but if you do notice any dirt, gently brush it off instead of washing them. The caps are quite delicate so be sure to select unbroken ones if you’re after beautiful presentation.
If you are eating the mushrooms raw and finely sliced, select smaller mushrooms as they are said to be slightly stronger in flavour. Once cooked however, the mushroom’s natural umami flavour is unleashed, so size doesn’t matter – go as big or as small as you like.