Wood ear mushrooms are a delicious edible mushroom used in Chinese cuisine and medicine. Black wood ear mushrooms are a great source of nutrients including pantothenic acid, selenium, riboflavin, thiamine, magnesium, zinc, B6, folate, calcium, potassium, manganese and more.
Research shows that wood ears contain an abundance of antioxidants and polyphenols which can protect our cells against oxidative damage and prevent disease such as cancer, heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Research has also found wood ears to have antimicrobial properties that help against bacteria.
Wood ear mushrooms may be found fresh at the Bethesda Central Farmers Market or purchased dried online. These mushrooms absorb flavor from other ingredients and may be added to any soup, noodles, dumpling fillings and more.
Wood Ear Mushroom Salad
8 cups of fresh or re-hydrated organic black wood ears, tough ends trimmed and washed thoroughly
6 cloves of fresh garlic, crushed or grated
3 tablespoons of Chinese black vinegar
2 tablespoons of soy sauce
2 tablespoon of toasted sesame oil
3 tablespoons of chopped fresh cilantro
Salt and white pepper to taste
Tear the wood ear mushrooms into bite-sized pieces
Boil wood ears in water for 4 minutes
Rinse with cold water and drain
Dry the wood ear mushrooms thoroughly; you may use a salad spinner or allow to air dry
Heat the sesame oil in a small pan
Top the wood ear mushrooms with garlic and cilantro
Pour the hot oil over the cilantro and garlic
Mix the rest of the ingredients into the salad
Toss thoroughly and set aside in the refrigerator to marinade for 30+ minutes
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Cai, M., Lin, Y., Luo, Y. L., Liang, H. H., & Sun, P. L. (2015). Extraction, Antimicrobial, and Antioxidant Activities of Crude Polysaccharides from the Wood Ear Medicinal Mushroom Auricularia auricula-judae (Higher Basidiomycetes). International journal of medicinal mushrooms, 17(6), 591–600. https://doi.org/10.1615/intjmedmushrooms.v17.i6.90