Maitake, otherwise known as Grifola frondosa, is a polypore mushroom. It is a unique mushroom and recognisable by its unusual fronds, giving it a floral appearance. In Japanese folk law, the Maitake mushroom was so prized due to its sensational taste, when it was found, people would dance with joy, hence why it is now often called “the dancing mushroom”.
The Maitake mushroom has a very rich, savoury taste, which adds an extra zest to dishes. Maitake vamps up any dish. Salt really makes the flavours in Maitake come to life, so cook with a little cheese or bacon to really emphasize the Maitake's taste. The longer the mushroom is cooked, the more intense the flavour. Maitake is very simple to prepare and almost all of the mushroom can be used, meaning there is little wastage. It cooks quickly and can be sauteed or baked.
Maitake has been used in Chinese medicine to treat illnesses for centuries. It contains vitamin B1, otherwise known as thiamine, which helps to keep the nervous system healthy. The maitake mushroom also contains vitamin B2, riboflavin, which assists in keeping the eyes, skin and nervous system healthy. They also contain vitamin D, which helps to keep bones and teeth healthy. These attributes make Maitake an ideal addition to a healthy diet.
Maitake can sometimes be found in Waitrose, ASDA and Sainsburys mixed packs. It can also be purchased loose from our on site farm shop, The Mushroom Basket.
How to prepare Maitake Mushrooms
You Will Need
Livesey Bros Maitake
Oil of your choice (We recommend rapeseed oil)
Salt and Pepper to season
Hob (Gas or electric)
1. Using a sharp knife and a chopping board, slice the mushroom, including the stalk, until the fronds separate.
2. Over a medium heat, add butter or oil to the pan and bring to a high temperature.
3. When the oil or butter is hot, add the Maitake mushrooms.
4. Cook for 5 – 6 minutes until the Maitake has softened and is slightly darker in colour. Hopefully it will have crisped up slightly and all of the individual leaves have separated.
5. Season with salt and serve whilst hot.