By Nordic Temptations •
Hundreds of mushroom species growing in the wild in the Nordic countries are suitable for consumption. The total annual yield of edible mushrooms (only in Finland) is estimated at 1,000 million kg, which amounts to an average of 50 kg/ha.
Boletes, milk-caps, golden chanterelles, trumpet chanterelles, hedgehog fungus, and sheep polypore are especially typical fare for an autumn meal. Other types of mushrooms suitable for consumption include the gypsy mushroom, horn of plenty, arched woodwax, and some species of Russula.
Mushrooms are a good source of fibre, they supply moderate amounts of vitamins A, B, and D. Of the forest mushrooms, Chanterelles and Trumpet Chanterelles are rich in vitamin D2. Chanterelles, as their golden colour suggests, also supply plenty of carotenoids, which are precursors of vitamin A. Of the B vitamins, mushrooms are especially rich in vitamin B2 (riboflavin) and vitamin B3 (niacin).
An important nutritional property of mushrooms is their high content of minerals and trace elements, higher than that of grains or garden plants. In the wild, mushrooms are good at extracting nutrients from the growth medium. They are especially rich in potassium, iron, zinc, and selenium. They contain only small amounts of sodium, so they are suitable also for people who have to watch their blood pressure.
The nature is also home to lethally poisonous species of mushrooms like False Morel (Gyromitra esculenta) one of the most delicious Nordic mushrooms. It is a highly toxic mushroom, fatal if eaten raw, for example prohibited from sale to the public in Spain. In the Nordic countries it may be sold fresh but it must be accompanied by warnings and instructions on correct preparation. False Morel contains plenty of vitamin D and is a good source of both B2 and B3 vitamins as well as potassium, selenium and iron. Our morels are prepared and canned, in this way they are ready to be used, rinsing is recommended.
The canned mushrooms are made of pure raw materials, sterilized and without any preservatives. Mushrooms are preserved in a mild salt brine (salt 0.9%), so they are ready to be used in the preparation of meals. Canned mushrooms retain their characteristic flavour, texture and nutritional value.
Mushrooms are well-suited for drying and maintain their aroma and consistency well. Some chefs profess that reconstituted mushrooms are actually superior in flavour to fresh ones! Dried mushrooms can be crushed into flour and used in seasoning in soups, sauces or pizzas. Or let dried mushrooms stay in cool water 0,5 – 1 hour, then use like fresh ones. The soaking water is worth taking advantage of in cooking. 20 g of dried mushrooms is equal to about 200 g fresh.
Nordic forest mushrooms available on the Côte d’Azur as canned and dried only at Nordic Temptations.