Enoki has long white stalks and tiny caps. It’s a popular ingredient in many Asian cuisines, used in soups, stir-fries, braises, hot pots, noodle dishes, curries, and more.
Enoki mushrooms (えのきたけ・榎茸) are cream-colored mushrooms with tall thin stalks and tiny caps. It grows in clumps and is often sold in this form. In Japanese cuisine, they are stir-fried, simmered, braised, topped over a bowl of ramen or rice, and cooked in hot pot dishes.
The Japanese also use it to make nametake (なめたけ). It’s a sweet-savory side dish and condiment that’s seasoned with soy sauce, sake, and mirin.
Table of contents
What Is Enoki
Enoki (Flammulina velutipes) refers to mushrooms that are long and slender stems and tiny caps. It’s native to East Asia but is nowadays cultivated around the world, both in the wild and grown commercially. You can find enoki year-round.
Other names for enoki are golden needle mushrooms, lily mushrooms, winter mushrooms, snow puff mushrooms, velvet foot, and enokitake.
What Does It Taste Like
Enoki has a mild, earthy, nutty flavor and a slightly chewy and crunchy texture when cooked.
How To Use Enoki
Trim off the root base of the enoki, and separate into individual strands or smaller clumps. If you see dirt attached, swish it in a bowl of clean water and pat dry.
It cooks quickly, so add it to the end of cooking to avoid overcooking, which will make it very chewy.
Recipes Using Enoki Mushrooms
Where To Buy
Find enoki at the Japanese and Asian grocery stores or specialty food stores. You may also find enoki dried.
How To Choose The Best
Select ones that are dry and firm to the touch with a fresh appearance, as opposed to slimy, soggy, or discolored.
How To Store
Like other mushrooms, enoki needs to breathe. Remove the plastic package and store it in a paper bag or wrap it in paper towels. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week. You can also freeze enoki in a ziplock bag after you cut off the root base and separate the clumps.
You can replace enoki with any mushroom such as king oyster, shiitake, cremini, or maitake.
Enoki is also appreciated for its medicinal benefits and thus is used in traditional medicine.
It’s a low-calorie source of protein and complex carbohydrates and contains dietary fiber, niacin, calcium, potassium, selenium, copper, phosphorus, and iron. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, can reduce high cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and improve immune systems.
You could also use enoki as a low-carb noodle replacer. Blanch or steam the enoki and swap with your usual noodle of choice.
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