The maitake mushroom, also known as hen-of-the-woods, is incredible fried, says Drew Verdam, a sous-chef with the university’s Food and Catering Services.
“The thing about them is you get this really meaty taste,” he says. “It gives you that sort of feeling like you’re biting into a real burger.”
He has produced a video demonstrating his recipe for a sandwich made with battered slices of the mushrooms, which he sourced locally.
Marinated Maitake Mushroom Sandwich
- 1/3 c. soy sauce
- ¼ c. rice vinegar
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
- 2 Tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1 Tbsp minced ginger
- 1 Tbsp minced scallions
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
Whisk together all ingredients until the honey is dissolved.
- ½ c. flour
- ½ c. cornstarch
- 1 egg
- 1 cup chilled club soda
Whisk all ingredients together. The batter should be quite runny, so it leaves a thin light coating.
- 1 lb maitake mushroom
- 1 C cornstarch
- Sea salt to season
- Oil for frying
- Cut the mushroom into eight pieces like a pie and marinate in the soy marinade for two to four hours.
- Preheat the oil to 375º F.
- Dredge the marinated mushroom pieces on cornstarch and shake off any excess.
- Dredge them in the batter and fry until golden brown on both sides, about three to four minutes per side.
- Transfer the mushrooms to drain onto paper towel with a slotted spoon and sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
Verdam recommends serving on a bun with your favourite toppings.