Funghi is one of the most versatile ingredients in Italian cooking, appearing in risottos, pastas, on pizzas and in countless other dishes.
Even though they might not look it mushrooms are very good for you. They contain vitamins C, B6, and B12 which boost your immune system and help to flush toxins from your body. They're also very low in calories - a cup of button mushrooms has just 15 calories whilst a cup of Portobello mushrooms weighs in at a not so hefty 22 calories.
The majority of edible mushrooms are farmed, most of them in China, where about half of all cultivated mushrooms are grown. Those that aren’t can fetch extraordinary prices. For example, Japan’s matsutake mushroom goes for around $1,000 per pound - a method for farming the matsutake has yet to be developed, and a lack of trees from which to harvest these mushrooms makes them extremely rare.
At the more affordable – but still very tasty – end of the spectrum is the Porcini mushroom. These have a firm white stalk and a broad dark brown cap and can be experienced first hand at Strada in some of our favourite dishes:
Chargrilled butterflied chicken breast with a creamy porcini mushroom & thyme sauce and roasted new potatoes & onions.
Pasta filled with porcini mushrooms, ricotta & provolone cheese in a light mushroom broth, finished with sautéed mushrooms and chives.