HOME > Chowhound > Vegetarian & Vegan >

Discussion

Raw Portobello Mushrooms: Safe to eat the stem?

Or should they be discarded?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Fine to eat the stem, totally safe. But it can be kind of tough and fiberous. I twist off the stem and keep it in the freezer for next time i make stock or soup.

    18 Replies
      1. re: c oliver

        Thanks, guys. By raw, though, you do know I mean uncooked, right?

        1. re: SpencerTracy

          Yep. Not sure why you'd think it would be a problem. AFAIK, the stem is just a part of the whole mushroom. If the cap can't hurt you....

          1. re: c oliver

            "Safe" was probably not the best word to use. Edible is more like it.

            For example, asparagus. The ends are cut off and thrown away. And though the stem of a mushroom isn't as rough, I thought that maybe there were other valid reasons to discard it, which is why I asked.

            Thanks again for your help.

            1. re: SpencerTracy

              I (almost) always slice off the bottom of the stem. I recently bought SIX morels at a price of $50/#!!!!!! I removed nothing from those :)

              1. re: c oliver

                Sheesh, that's a lot of money for a mushroom. A quick Google search mentioned their rarity - is that the reason why they're so expensive?

                I've never actually heard of morels before - I'll have to see if I can source them locally. Though at that price, it would be more for experimental purposes than anything else.

                1. re: SpencerTracy

                  It's a short season and small places to find them. But they're really, really good. I saute them in nothing but butter with a little s&p. We're currently dry-aging a whole boneless ribeye that we'll have Weds. (28 days). If I can get a few morels, that will make the meal even more special.

                  1. re: c oliver

                    Hope it turns out great for you and that you're able to find a few more. You've definitely peaked my interest.

                    1. re: SpencerTracy

                      Google where you live and see if they're in your area. They're worth a few bucks. Not a pound's worth :)

                      1. re: c oliver

                        I will. Maybe if I ask nicely enough, they'll sell me just the stem. :)

                        1. re: SpencerTracy

                          LOL :) Good thought. I gotta tell ya that a year ago our fave resto had a morel risotto with a drizzle of truffle oil. Sublime.

                          1. re: c oliver

                            I'm eating mainly raw these days, so unless I'm able to find a local (raw) restaurant that uses morel's in any of their dishes, though I probably would do them no justice, I'll have to find flavorful ways to incorporate them into a meal myself.

                            Always glad to try something new, though, so I'm happy to have heard of these little guys - should be an interesting experiment. Thanks for turning me on to them.

                              1. re: SpencerTracy

                                Raw morels are not nearly as good as they are cooked IMO....
                                Do you already read the blog rawmazing? She doesn't post often but has some great recipes on her recipe page...
                                http://www.rawmazing.com

                                1. re: Ttrockwood

                                  I'm not living a fully raw lifestyle (95%, maybe?), so I can and definitely will make an exception to try a few cooked morels.

                                  As for rawmazing.com, I'd be surprised if I didn't at least pass by the site before. But no, although I have a ton of blogs, websites, and Youtube channels bookmarked, that isn't one of them. I'll check it out, though. Thanks for the link.

                  2. re: c oliver

                    Oh, and what's the reason for slicing off the bottom of the stem? Of the portobello, I mean.

                    1. re: SpencerTracy

                      Oops, missed this. I just think the bottom, which has already been cut, dries out. But I cut off a minute amount. An eighth of an inch maybe?

        2. Absolute poison. Do not eat under any circumstances. Now, if you cook them during a full moon with a newts tail and 2 drops of stump water, then you'll be fine.

          1 Reply
          1. Commercially available American mushrooms are almost all grown in sterilized soil, making raw supermarket mushrooms safer than almost any other food. The dirt clinging to the stems is sterilized. It is left in place in part because washing mushrooms causes very quick rotting, in a way that washing carrots or apples does not. This is why you refrigerate newly-purchased mushrooms before washing.

            Organic sterilization methods are in use on many farms.

            The sterilization is done out of fear that spoors from poisonous varieties may invade (be wafted onto) traditional farming methods (rows of rotten logs)

            1 Reply