One of the “kings of mushrooms,” reishi mushrooms are used for functional benefits rather than for culinary purposes. Fully grown reishi features a red cap with a shiny, varnished-like surface, fading to orange and then white tips. It often has a kidney or fan shaped cap. They are a tough, durable mushroom, which helps them survive throughout the growing season.
Ganoderma is the scientific name for reishi, and coffee is one of the most popular ways to enjoy this medicinal mushroom. Because of its corky texture and bitter flavor, reishi is best enjoyed dried and ground, or used as an extract. You’ll find reishi in a variety of teas and tinctures, as well as dried reishi for your own concoctions, in our marketplace. To mask its bitter flavor, you might also try mixing pieces of reishi with other edible mushrooms and a mirepoix of your choosing to create a healthy and delicious stock for sipping or used as a soup base. Foraged offers lots of unique reishi mushroom products — check out Products category to see the wide variety.
Wild reishi mushroom
Reishi is a fungi that most commonly grows on dead or dying deciduous and coniferous trees. Fruiting takes place at warmer temperatures, usually 60-85 degrees Fahrenheit, so in some locations it can be found in the spring, whereas in other locations it may fruit in the fall. It is native to tropical and temperate climates in North America, Asia, and Europe.
Learn Your Land is a great resource for how to harvest wild Reishi mushrooms.
Reishi mushroom benefits
Reishi has long been used to promote health and longevity in China, Japan, and other Asian countries. Reishi is a Japanese name for the mushroom, while the Chinese refer to it as lingzhi. Chinese medicine has used reishi for over 2000 years and calls it the “Mushroom of Immortality.” Several benefits have been studied and documented, including “anticancer effects; blood glucose regulation; antioxidant, antibacterial, and antiviral effects; and protection against liver and gastric injury.” While reishi is typically used to treat patients alongside more traditional methods, it truly is a superfood, perfect for those looking to add a boost to their daily health regimen.