Shiitakes are known for their excellent flavor and medicinal qualities. They are earthy, hearty, and rich, and pair well with other vegetables, in soups or sauces, or substituted for meat. Throw stems in a freezer bag and add them to your next vegetable stock, which will be richer and heartier than any stock you've ever made.
They are one of the most popular cultivated mushrooms, grown for centuries in Asia and then adapted for cultivation in the U.S. This wide-range naturalized strain named "Cismont" produces abundant crops on oak and other hardwood logs in central Virginia.
Shiitake mushrooms have powerful medicinal qualities as an antibiotic, antiviral, and anti-cancer immune modulator. Shiitakes eaten regularly can help regulate blood lipid levels and reduce blood glucose levels.