from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. An edible eastern Asian mushroom (Lentinus edodes) having an aromatic, fleshy, golden or dark brown to blackish cap and an inedible tough stipe. Also called Chinese black mushroom, golden oak mushroom, Oriental black mushroom.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A wide, brown variety of edible mushroom, Lentinula edodes.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. edible east Asian mushroom having a golden or dark brown to blackish cap and an inedible stipe
“We saw the best effects in shiitake and nameko mushrooms, while we also tested reishi mushrooms, which are not edible but are used in certain types of traditional Chinese medicine,” he said.
Since the Kojien doesn't give a first use citation for shiitake the way it does for kawatake, my only clue for how old the word shiitake is is that the term was picked up for the name of a kabuki wig.
There are two ways of writing "shiitake" according to the Kojien, and both have a mushroom kanji for the "take" part, so that seems rather simple.
Gower has written books on Japanese cooking, so it’s no surprise that he’s such a fan of the shiitake, which is often referred to as the “monarch of mushrooms” in Japan, according to “Shiitake: The Healing Mushroom” by Kenneth Jones (Healing Arts Press, 1995).
In the winter, Kouprie relies on locally cultivated mushrooms such as shiitake and cremini.
Traditionally used as a condiment for Peking duck and moo shu pork, it also enhances the flavor of stir-fries and umami-rich finger foods such as shiitake spring rolls.
Medicinal mushrooms such as shiitake, maitake and reishi contain beta-glucans (complex carbohydrates) that enhance immune activity against infections and cancer and reduce allergies
The custard consists of an egg mixture flavored with soy sauce, dashi, and mirin, with numerous ingredients such as shiitake mushrooms, kamaboko, and boiled shrimp placed into a tea-cup-like container.
While some fungal species, such as shiitake and enoki, are edible, some microscopic species can trigger numerous infections in the human body.
Note: Specialty mushrooms such as shiitake, cremini, or portobello are pricey but healthful and delicious.
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