Happy Mushroom Day to One and All!
Today, we here at Everything Summer Camp, tip our caps to this incredibly interesting form of life on this planet. These fascinating beings grow wild in a wide array of locales. But despite their accessibility, it’s important never to consume wild mushrooms as you can never be sure what type is which. Some look uncannily similar to others, yet some are medicinal while others are fatally poisonous.
Mushrooms may not look like much at first sight, but take a look at just several different points about these intriguing organisms and I guarantee you’ll agree—mushrooms are downright miraculous!
A Mysterious Life Form
Neither plant nor animal, mushrooms are actually classified as fungi. And nobody knows how many there are in the world! While you’ll only find several different sorts in your typical grocery store, there are 10,000 known species in North America alone. And it stands that we’re only aware of less than half the amount of different species that are actually out there.
Mushrooms—is there anything they can’t do?! These fungi can be used as a dye, packing material, water filter, medicine, oil spill-cleaning agent, nuclear meltdown equalizer, and other applications that we’re not even entirely aware of yet. For a better understanding of how mushrooms can be medicinal for us, check out hostdefense.com, the website of the world’s leading mycologist, Paul Stamets, (mushroom expert) where you can buy mushroom supplements for your health.
Unlike Other Foods!
You’ll find that many mushrooms have a meaty sort of texture, but few taste so much like fried chicken as the “chicken of the woods” mushroom. This bright orange fungus has the right texture and all! And, though I’ve never had the pleasure of trying the Lion’s Mane Mushroom, I’ve heard it said that it tastes like crab meat! The meaty texture of mushrooms is owed to their thick cell walls which is why it’s important to break those cell walls down through the cooking process. Raw mushrooms—even some slices in your salad—are tough on the digestive system, but nutritional when cooked appropriately.
Closer to People than Plants
One of the most surprising facts there is about mushrooms has only just recently been discovered: what people will so often refer to as a vegetable in the kitchen, mushrooms actually have closer relation to human beings than they do plants. Fungi were once recognized as a unique part of the animal kingdom, but eventually came to be seen as a kingdom all on their own. But the fact remains that fungi couldn’t be less like plants and typically has a lot more in common with people and other animals.
Mushrooms are pretty much my favorite food because, let’s face it, the edible ones are all pretty delicious. But not only that, they’re good for you, and they could help us replenish the damage we’ve done to the planet! Mushrooms to the rescue! Share the word about how cool mushrooms are and Happy Mushroom Day to you! And, as always, thanks for reading.