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Sourcing Spotlight: Little Sprout Farms

"Sprouting up" not long ago Little Sprout Farms has become a local darling to the Finger Lakes foodshed and region. Working in collaboration with Headwater Food Hub, LSF supplies prized mushrooms to renowned local restaurants. These tasty fungi can also be found in our Farro Risotto.

RealEats uses multiple varietals of the tasty fungi including Blue Oyster, Shiitake, Chestnut, Golden Phoenix and Lion's Mane, all grown safely and responsibly in Little Sprout Farm's facilities in Brockport, NY.

There are many health benefits associated to mushrooms too, such as being low in carbohydrates and calories, but also great sources of B vitamins, minerals, fiber and in some cases even protein. They're also considered to be an anti-inflammatory food containing high levels of beta-glucans, compounds that keep immune cells alert, plus a powerful antioxidant called ergothioneine that helps lower body-wide inflammation. (source: draxe.com)

Tasting the various types of mushrooms can be an interesting experience in it's own right with multiple layers of flavors and textures. Here is a quick breakdown complements of RealSimple.com

1. Oyster

Appearance and taste: Delicate, briny flavor and lacelike texture. Most oyster mushrooms are pale ivory, but they can also be yellow, pink, blue, or lavender.

Best uses: Saute briefly in olive oil or butter. They are extremely tender and moist when cooked, but they also taste spectacular raw in salads.

Good to know: Deteriorate quickly: must be used immediately.

2. Shittake

Appearance and taste: They taste smoky and full-bodied, whether fresh or dried. Caps range from medium brown to almost black.

Best uses: In stir-fries; the flavor is strong enough to hold its own with sauteed ginger and garlic.

Good to know: Nearly impossible to overcook. The stems are too tough to eat, but you can use them to flavor stocks and sauces before discarding them.

3. Cremini

Appearance and taste: Creminis have a distinctly earthy taste, with a delicate texture and pale brown color. They cost a little more than button mushrooms, but they're more flavorful.

Best uses: Will brown well when sauteed, due to their low moisture content. Saute in butter and herbs before tossing into soups for an extra boost.

Good to know: Cremini are baby portobellos. The stems can be diced and sauteed, then used as a filling for omelets.

Learn more about Little Sprout Farms and stay tuned for new menu items here at RealEats and enjoy some of their produce in the comfort of your own home! Follow LSF over on Instagram here: @LittleSproutFarms.

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