Spicy Shiitake Mushroom Jerky

Whether you’re looking for a way to reduce harmful free radicals or find a delicious snack to replace another guilty pleasure, mushroom jerky is the answer! It’s readily available thanks to Pan’s or can easily be made at home using fresh mushrooms.

When our bodies convert food to energy, something called free radicals are produced. Scientifically speaking, these are oxygen atoms that are not paired with electrons. These “free” oxygen atoms can cause serious damage to our bodies. To prevent cell, protein and DNA damage, we need antioxidants to combat free radicals.

According to a recent study, Penn State researchers found that mushrooms have high amounts of ergothioneine and glutathione that act as powerful and effective antioxidants. Mushrooms are one of the few food sources that contain both of these compounds. And what’s really amazing is that heat doesn’t have a deleterious effect on the benefits these antioxidants provide, so mushrooms provide great health benefits in the raw or cooked form.

If you’re looking for convenience, mushroom jerky is readily available at health food stores and online (Amazon). If you’re a fan of homemade, here is a recipe that won’t disappoint. If you don’t like spicy food, you can skip the Thai seasoning and use a little salt and pepper instead.

Prep Time: 5 mins

Cook Time: 10 hrs

Ingredients

1/2 lb fresh shiitake mushrooms, quartered

1/4 cup avocado oil

1/4 cup maple syrup

tablespoon chia seeds

1/2 tsp sea salt

1-2 tablespoons Thai Seasoning

Thai Seasoning:

1 tablespoon sesame seeds

1 tablespoon ground hot chili pepper

2 teaspoons ground coriander

2 teaspoons onion powder

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, crushed

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon lemon zest, dried

Directions

Cut the hard stems from the Shiitake mushrooms, wash thoroughly and cut in halves or quarters to make one to two inch pieces. Drain completely.

In a large dish, spread out the mushrooms and sprinkle Thai Seasoning over entire top layer (to taste). Add freshly ground salt and chia seeds.

In a liquid measuring cup, add the avocado oil and maple syrup. Pour evenly over seasoned mushrooms. Mix all ingredients thoroughly and marinate for two to eight hours.

Mix one more time and pull mushrooms out and place on dehydrator trays (solid trays or small screen trays). Dehydrate at 155-160 degrees Fahrenheit up to ten hours or until mushrooms are moisture-free but not crisp. The texture should be relatively soft and gummy.

Store in an airtight container for up to a week at room temperature or keep refrigerated for up to two weeks.

©Room2GrowGarden.com, March 2019

Reference

https://news.psu.edu/story/491477/2017/11/09/research/mushrooms-are-full-antioxidants-may-have-anti-aging-potential

©Room2GrowGarden.com, March 2019

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