Mushrooms are one of the strangest and most delicious foods to enter our kitchens.

They’re neither animal nor vegetable, they can be hard to find yet they sprout everywhere, they can be poisonous or curative. Their spores can even survive in outer space. But the meat of the matter is that mushrooms are unique, delicious and good for you.

Fungi Facts

In the recent film, Fantastic Fungi, Paul Stamets, Michael Pollan and other experts say that mushrooms can save the world, or at least parts of it. According to the mycologists quoted in the film, mushrooms hold answers to disease, pollution, anxiety, depression and global warming. There they are, right underfoot.

Mycologists point out to the intricate network mycelia (that’s mushrooms and other fungus) form between the roots of trees, allowing them to communicate. they attribute all kinds of healing properties to various mushrooms– cancer, infection, viruses can all be helped with the right kind of mushroom.

And before you raise your eyebrows through the roof, remember that penicillin comes from a kind of fungus. The first statins–cholesterol-lowering medications– were derived from mushrooms, and antibiotics like cyclosporin have been found via mushrooms.

We’re only going as far as eyebrow-raising–we’ll leave consciousness-raising properties for other articles. the fact is that mushrooms are an incredibly interesting life form, probably underused by humans, with under-recognized health value.

And, our main point: mushrooms are incredibly tasty.