There are some people, who do not like to include mushrooms in their everyday diet. In fact, they think that as they are fungi, they are not edible things. On the other hand, you may find many people, who are highly interested to consume mushrooms, after cooking them in a proper way. Mushrooms are one of the low caloric foods and they are the best treats for many of the vegetarians. In addition to it, they may also help to enhance the flavor and texture of the food.
If still you are doubtful on trying these fungi, it may be for the reason that you are scared of suffering from any ailment. You may become sick, only if the mushrooms have become rotten. That is why most of the consumers, who like to enjoy the health benefits by eating mushrooms, ask one question – How long does last their mushrooms?
One of the interesting facts about mushrooms is that there is no best before date or sell-by date. The only thing, which you can check in your store-bought mushroom, is the date of purchase.
Due to their excellent flavor and the presence of minerals and vitamins (like Vitamin D), mushrooms have turned out to be an accepted vegetable that also holds protein. But, as wild mushrooms may be extremely unsafe and also toxic, you have to ensure that you have purchased from a reliable store.
Signs to recognize bad mushrooms
There are a number of obvious signs, which indicate that your mushrooms have to be consumed as soon as possible or discarded immediately.
- Slimy condition of mushroom – It is the foremost rule that is to be considered while detecting the freshness of the mushrooms. If the mushrooms are too slimy, they are no more edible. This may be caused due to their storage in the fridge for extensive period. Though they are not completely risky at this stage, still it is the best practice that you should know while cooking.
- Wrinkles on the surface – At times, mushrooms do not become slimy; however, they may seem to be dry, and wrinkles are seen at that time. Though it is right to dry off mushrooms to a slight extent (as they are quite soggy vegetables at any rate), you do not want these fungi to be extremely wrinkled. Thus, if they have shrunken look, it is safe for you to discard instead of consuming them.
- Appearance of dark spots – These black spots are the indications that they are beginning to be rancid. The most desirable thing, which you have to do now, is to watch the mushrooms very often, while they are in your refrigerator. When you find that they are becoming darker or growing dark stains, it is the right time to throw them away.
- Stored for about two weeks – The common belief in the case of storage time of the fungi is about two weeks, if left out, in a fridge. Obviously, you have to apply your own common sense and judgment. When they feel, smell and appear good, they are possibly safe for your consumption.
- Release of a bad smell – Your mushrooms must not discharge any strong or clear odor. When you are getting bad smell, they have become inedible. In fact, if you place your nose near some good mushroom, you may get some scent. However, that is very subtle and light.
These are some symptoms, which you should remember, in order to get rid of all the bad mushrooms and avoid any health risk. However, there are some tips that may help you to increase the ability of your mushrooms to stay fresh.
- Let the mushrooms breathe well – You have to store these fungi in such a manner that helps in the flow of air without making it dry excessively. A paper carrier in a fridge is a general option.
- Paper towels and plastic bags – There is another different way of keeping the mushrooms fresher. You should keep them inside plastic bags, striped with some paper-made towels in order to grab the dampness. Ensure that you alter those towels on a regular basis when you are not making use of them immediately. Find diverse means of heating them in order that you may utilize them in any meal.
- Keep the fungi in any sealed cover – The most efficient technique for storage is to only place them within a sealed bag or container, which you have got from shop. Make certain that you do not unpack the bag or alter with them until you are prepared to utilize them.
- Freezing – When you desire freezing up a number of mushrooms to use them later, it is a good idea. The mushrooms, if left out, they may retain a high amount of water. It becomes quite harder for you to freeze these fungi while they are in raw condition. If you want to do it, always ensure that you have frozen them on some parchment piece or paper. Then, move it fast to any air-tight container by pressing out an amount of air. The perfect option is to cook mushrooms at first and pack them to airtight bags that contain less amount of air. Just heat up your mushrooms in some garlic and oil; after that store those items in a preserved container. They are now ready to be used for preparing omelet.
Thus, in general, it may be said that if you like to increase shelf life of your store bought mushrooms, you have to leave them un-peeled and keep them in one sealed bag in your refrigerator. For long term storage needs, mushrooms can be made frozen for about six to eight months.
However, they have to be steamed initially and kept in a container in freezer. Besides, you may also better look for some farm-fresh mushrooms that will surely help you in gaining a lot of health benefits. You do not need to be afraid of consuming mushrooms, only when they are in good condition.