Chicken of the woods is one of the most popular varieties of mushrooms out there. As the name recommends, it tastes a bit like chicken. That’s not only about the taste, it also has a meaty and stringy texture like chicken. The mushroom is available in most of the countries around the globe and it’s also pretty easy to identify. Later in the article, we will discuss more about it
So, how to cook chicken in the wood to get the best taste? Due to the taste of the mushroom, they are pretty expensive. So, if you have purchased the mushrooms, you should know how to cook in the right way for the best taste. Let’s see you can do that.
Everything You Need to Know About Chicken of the Woods
The chicken of the woods is a saprobic that typically grows on the dead and living trees. It is pretty easy to spot the mushroom because of its large size and eye-catching yellowish-orange color. The beautiful thing tastes as better as it looks. Although the name, some people claim the flavor is more like a lobster or crab. It also has some lemony taste apart from being meaty. Whatever the flavor is, it is a world popular delicacy that you should try at least once.
The variation of fungus can be an excellent alternative to regular meats. What’s more impressive is it is suitable for a variety of dishes. These are typically found in the wild although they can also be grown on the farm. The mushroom is mostly safe but it can cause gastric distress in some peoples. Consider trying a little bit of it cooked to be assured about whether it suits you or not.
Like all other varieties of wild mushroom, never consider eating the chicken of woods in raw form. Also, avoid eating the mushroom that grows on conifer or eucalyptus trees as they can absorb toxins from the tree. You must cook it properly to avoid any issues. Also, avoid cooking the dishes made of the mushroom in large quantities as it can upset your stomach and cause gastric distress.
How to Cook Chicken of the Woods
There are several ways to cook chicken of the woods. In the below paragraph, we will let you know about some of the best recipes you can prepare with the mushroom. At first, let’s see how you can cook it in the simplest way.
- Olive Oil (1 tablespoon)
- Chicken Wood Mushroom (3 Cups)
- Tomato Sauce (2 Cups)
- Minced Garlic (3 Cloves)
- Salt and Pepper (As Required)
- Apple Cider Vinegar (1/2 Cup)
Here are the steps you need to follow for the recipe:
Step 1: Clean the Mushroom
Begin with unscrambling the shelves of the fungus. This will allow you to get access to all the nooks and crannies. Now make use of a mushroom brush to get rid of the dust and dirt from the surface. After that, use a clean damp cloth or paper towel for further cleaning.
If you think the above doings are not enough to clean the mushroom, you can also keep it submerged in a large bowl filled with water. However, don’t allow them to soak for a long time as it can cause waterlog.
Step 2: Cut Them into Smaller Pieces
The next thing you need to do is to cut the mushrooms into smaller pieces. Or, you can simply tear them into minor pieces. Afterward, put your pan on the stove and add one tablespoon of olive oil to it. Also, add the minced garlic and out the stove in low heat. Let them cook for one minute following the way.
Step 3: Add the Mushroom
Now put the mushroom on the pan. Let it cook for around 10 minutes. Make sure that you are frequently stirring the pan during the period. Wait until the mushroom becomes vibrant orange. Now you can add the apple cider vinegar and cook for another five minutes.
Step 4: Add the Tomato Sauce
Now you can add the tomato sauce to the dish and mix it with the mushrooms through stirring. After that, you will need to cook for another 10 to 15 minutes. That’s it! Your delicious chicken of the woods is ready to be served.
Some General Cooking Tips for Chicken of the Woods
As the chicken of the woods is an unknown delicacy for most of us, here are some tips to get the best out of the delicious mushroom:
- The chicken of the woods become brittle and harder with their age. To get the best taste, you should pick the young ones. There is some easy way to detect the fresh one: they should have juicy caps with a tender texture. They will also discharge clear liquid while cutting them.
- The chicken of the woods can be used in recipes instead of the chicken or tofu. They can also be a great addition to rice recipes, egg dishes, curries, casseroles, and risottos.
- You may store the mushrooms in a paper bag on the refrigerator for cooking. However, don’t preserve them for more than a week.
- There are high chances of waterlogging the mushroom while cleaning them through the regular procedure. To preserve the best taste, a simple wipe cleaning with a damp cloth is more preferred.
- It’s better to cut the mushrooms into smaller pieces for ease of cooking. You can fry, bake, Sautee, or blanch them.
- If you are not deep-frying the chicken fungi, try to use as little cooking oil as possible. They can absorb a lot of oil due to the sponginess which is unhealthy and may cause acidity.
Chicken of the woods is not only tasty and flavorful, they are also a great source of essential antioxidant compounds like caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, quercetin, etc. They also contain vitamin C, potassium, Vitamin A, antifungal, and antibiotic properties. So, you should definitely try out the unique and delicious chicken of mushroom dish.