Guidelines for having wild mushroom delicacies


It is the right time to enjoy wild mushrooms, but how to avoid taking poisonous mushrooms is a big challenge for many foodies. Here are some useful suggestions. 


Where to buy wild mushrooms

Formal farmer’s market is a good choice. Wild mushrooms will be checked and screened before entering market in Kunming, so buying wild mushrooms in a farm produce trade fair is much safer than buying from street pedlars.  

“Most of our mushrooms come from Kunming Mushuihua Wild Mushroom Trading Market where the mushroom is screened for the first time, and then we will arrange experienced staff to check for the second time before purchasing,” A manager of Wuliduo Vegetable Trading Market said. “ We also put up posters to guide consumers to properly cook and eat wild mushrooms.” 


“Only common wild mushrooms are allowed to be sold in our market to prevent the influx of poisonous fungi,” Mr. Li who is a management office staff of Southwest Wild Mushroom Trading Center said. 


How to choose wild mushrooms

First, weighing a wild mushroom by hands when choosing is necessary, because if a small mushroom is unreasonably heavy, it may be injected with water. 

Second, pay attention to the intactness of wild mushrooms. Some unscrupulous sellers may stick the heads and bodies of broken mushrooms with toothpicks or glue and sell them at a high price. 

Third, the cheap buyer takes bad mushrooms. Rotten or wormy wild mushrooms are inedible. If a looking good basket of wild mushrooms was sold at a low price, there must be some problems.  


How to cook wild mushrooms

Zhang Yongxing, a well-known edible mushroom cooking master in Yunnan, suggested using a specialized knife and cutting board for wild mushrooms cooking and slicing evenly. “ Slices of uniform thickness are easy to cook thoroughly. You could use a large amount of a mixture of lard and canola oil to fry wild mushrooms for 20 minutes, which can have a certain detoxification effect and produce a special fragrance,” He said. 

Boiling is the safest way to processing wild mushrooms since it can heat them thoroughly. Except highly toxic mushrooms, poisoning rarely occurs when mushrooms are thoroughly heated.  

Sichuan pepper is a safe spice for cooking delicious wild mushrooms, although some people think the special flavor of it may cause poison. Garlic as a spice is widely used in cooking wild mushrooms, but in fact it cannot detoxify the poisonous mushrooms. 

How to eat and store wild mushrooms safely

Long-term consumption of large amounts of wild mushrooms can increase the risk of poisoning, so doctors recommend moderate consumption. Drinking is not recommended when eating wild mushrooms, as the fast blood circulation caused by alcohol will make your body absorb more toxins, reducing the chance of surviving. 

In terms of how to store wild mushrooms, Sun Dafeng, the president of Yunnan Edible Fungus Association, suggested people frying and then freezing them in bags separately. Before cooking again, these frozen mushrooms can be store for around one year. 

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(Editors: Alison, Rachel)

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