Nameko

Common Names

Nameko is a famous mushroom in Japan because of its slimy texture. The Japanese call it Namerako, which actually means ‘slimy mushroom’. In other parts of the world, the nameko mushroom is known by other names such as the butterscotch mushroom, slime pholiota, or viscid mushroom.

Characteristics

The surface of the nameko mushroom is covered with an orange slime or gelatin-like substance. The cap of this shroom generally ranges from 1-3” in diameter, while the length of stem is between 2-3”. Nameko’s gills are typically white or light yellow color.

History

This nameko mushroom is extremely popular in Japan. For centuries, namekos have been used in miso soup, which is a traditional Japanese soup.

Habitat

Hardwood forests, like oak and beech, in Asia are the most suitable locations for namekos to grow.

Natural Cultivation Methods

It is best to cultivate namekos naturally via the hardwood log method. When you bury logs in moist soil, they will fruit for up to four years.

Fruiting Cycles and Yield Potentials

A 5-lb block of substrate will yield an average of 1-lb of mushrooms on the first flush. The second flush will begin about 10-14 days after the first flush is spent and will yield approximately the same amount of mushrooms.

Substrates

Sawdust complemented by rice bran and gypsum is usually the best mixture of raw materials for nameko substrates.

Medicinal/ Nutritional Properties

The medicinal properties of nameko mushrooms are well known throughout the Asian culture. Many believe that eating namekos is extremely important for the resistance of staph infections.

Nutritionally, namekos are an excellent food choice. Some of the vitamins that are present in the nameko are thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin. The minerals that are present in nameko mushrooms are calcium, potassium and sodium. All of the vitamins and minerals in namekos are essential to one’s diet.

The nameko mushroom also contains 4.2% of fat, 20.8% of crude protein, and 66.7% of carbohydrates.

Cooking with Nameko

Cooking with nameko can be quite tasty for those who enjoy Japenese food culture. We recommend that you dice the namekos into cubes and cook away the slimy cap. You can stir-fry them or even incorporate them in traditional Japanese soups, like miso. Additionally, they are an excellent complement to meats, fowl and game.