10-21-Season of Matsukake (Pine Mushrooms)
It is the late October now and I am back to the blog. This time, I want to write about Matsutake or Pine mushrooms I ate several times last week. Pine mushrooms have a unique taste and flavor is owed to the rare conditions under which it grows - under the base of pine trees between 20 to 60 years old and never in the same place twice. Their magnificent spicy-aroma, similar to a sweet cinnamon gives flavor enhancement to wild mushrooms dishes and make people ecstatic. Canadian Matsutake is a slightly different specie from the atsutake of Japan. Ours have the same smell and taste as genuine Japanese pines but are lighter in colour and often misshapen. Korea's variety look more like the Japanese mushrooms but lack the odour.
Some fussy gourmets say that North American Matsutake are not real and worthless. But for me it is more than enough and a luxury that I can taste only once in a year. I bought nearly 200 gram of dried North American Matsutake in H Mart few weeks ago. I made various dish out of it. Yesterday, I made Okinawa Soba with Pine Mushrooms and ate it alone.