The Black Oyster Mushroom is an Interesting Hybrid to Know About
THE BLACK OYSTER MUSHROOM (SHIMOFURI), ALSO KNOWN AS THE BLACK OYSTER, BLACK KING TRUMPET, OR THE BLACK PEARL IS A UNIQUE HYBRID THAT STARTING TO GAIN NOTORIETY
You’ve probably heard about oyster mushrooms by now. Oysters are popular, diverse, and aggressively-growing edibles that many small-scale mushrooms farmers have turned towards. Many of the popular oyster mushrooms have lovely, vibrant colors like pink or yellow oysters. Today we are getting into a hybrid oyster known as the black oyster mushroom. This mushroom was developed by crossbreeding European oyster mushrooms with Japanese oyster mushrooms.
Background information on the black oyster mushroom
The name (Shimofuri) means “marbling” in the Japanese language. You can see in the image below that this mushroom has a beautiful marbled pattern on its cap. These mushrooms cook up like the king trumpet but have a softer, more tender texture like other oyster mushrooms.
Like some other oyster mushrooms, this mushroom likes cooler temperatures to fruit. The ideal range is 55-60 degrees F with a relative humidity of 90-95%. You will find the texture is similar to the king trumpet, which is one of the mushrooms used to create this hybrid. This mushroom is more dense and meatier than most oyster mushrooms. The stems are large, thick, and edible, and a bit softer than the stem of the king trumpet. The caps are smaller than the stems and are also edible. The flavor is complex, with notes of sweetness and umami flavor. The black oyster mushroom has a peppery aftertaste, so they go great in soups, stews, veggie stir fries, pasta or risotto dishes. Due to its meatiness it can also be used as an alternative to meat or poultry.
The black oyster mushroom is considered to be easier to grow than the king trumpet, especially indoors. You can use a variety of substrates for growing this mushroom at home, including hardwood sawdust, which is popular for growing oyster mushrooms in general. However, the black oyster mushroom can grow a little differently from other p. Ostreatus, where it will develop primordia and then begin fruiting without pinning.
Understanding the presence of umami flavor in black oyster mushrooms
Here is an excerpt from the study Mushrooms—Biologically Distinct and Nutritionally Unique, which discusses both the umami flavor and some of the nutritional constituents associated:
“Mushrooms have many flavor and nutrient characteristics that make them an ideal addition to many dishes. Their texture and umami or savory flavor properties make them a suitable substitute for meat. Mushrooms contribute moisture that improves the mouth feel and overall sensory appeal of many dishes, whereas their low energy density (about 92% water) can reduce the energy density of the final dish when taking the place of other higher-energy-dense ingredients.”