Updated December 14th, 2021 at 15:25 IST

Enokitake mushrooms most Google-searched food in India; Know benefits, availability & more

Categorized as ‘healing mushroom’ & functional food, Enokitake is packed with scores of health benefits. It trended as people were focused on diet during COVID.

Zaini Majeed
IMAGE: Unsplash/Lisanto/Eiliv-Sonas Aceron | Image:self

Enoki mushrooms, also called Enokitake made it on Google’s most searched food for the year 2021 list and has been the most trending food recipes in India this year along with the Modak [Indian sweet dumpling dish], Methi Matar Malai [a popular Indian curry]and several other traditional dishes. Enoki mushrooms are long and slender, with thin stems and tiny white caps, and were prominently searched throughout the year 2021 for its health benefits during the COVID-19 Delta variant upsurge. The vegetarian food item also popped up on the top in terms of the queries and results searched by the users in over 70 countries, worldwide. 

It trended alongside the ‘COVID vaccine near me’ searches as the countries worldwide accelerated their vaccination campaign, and famous personalities when India’s track and field athlete Neeraj Chopra won a gold medal for the country at the Olympics in the javelin throw. Sweet fungi are extremely popular in East Asian cuisines, particularly in Japan, and are also called futu, or lily mushrooms. 

In China, they are popularly known as Jinzhen-gu or the golden needle mushrooms for its structure and the tiger lily buds. Across China, Vietnam, Korea, and Japan, these mushrooms are adequately utilized in the dishes on the menu as well as in household cooking. 

Why did ‘Enoki mushrooms trend in searches in India & what are its benefits?

Categorized as the ‘healing mushroom’ and functional food, the Enoki comes packed with scores of health benefits. It trended because more and more people focused on their health and diet during the pandemic. Enokitake, scientifically known as the Flammulina velutipes or Flammulina populicola, is the fungi known to possess anti-tumour properties as it contains proflamin, a compound in F. velutipes. It is clinically proven effective against rigorous forms of tumours. Not just that, the low-calorie fungus is an ideal source of B-complex vitamins. It consists of contains pantothenic acid-27%, niacin-44%, folates-12%, thiamin-19%, and riboflavin-15% of daily required values, according to Nutrition and 

This particular mushroom is also rich in niacin as compared with other mushrooms which help in fighting the pellagra disease, an illness categorized by inflamed skin, diarrhoea, dementia caused by a lack of the vitamin niacin. The mushroom also contains high calcium and phosphorus levels and is a great source of potassium, an anti-sodium electrolyte. 

Enoki boosts immune system 

These  ‘Golden Needle Mushrooms’ or ‘Winter Mushroom’, widely available in the Indian supermarket host healthy Amino acids which are known to improve the immune system, and is a remedy for hypertension, high cholesterol and liver disease. “Extracts from the Enokitake mushroom contains immuno-modulatory protein that can be potentially excelled for immune therapies, and to support cardiovascular health,” pharmacological and clinical research stressed. 

Some of the popular recipes of the Enoki mushroom are: 

  • Sautéed enoki mushrooms

  • Enoki mushroom stir-fry
  • Enoki mushrooms with a garlic and scallion sauce
  • Enoki mushroom pancakes with dipping sauce
  • Steamed Enoki Mushrooms
  • Microgreens Salad with Crispy Enoki
  • Enoki Mushrooms in Mirin and Soy Sauce

Published December 14th, 2021 at 15:25 IST

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