Almond Mushroom (Agaricus subrufescens)
The almond mushroom originates from Brazil and Argentine under tropical conditions; they have an almond flavor as the name suggests. In less tropical conditions however, it can be cultivated under warm conditions. The cap has a brown color and capricious edge with a firm structure.
Almond mushrooms form fruit bodies singly or in clusters in leaf litter rich soil, often in domestic habitats or in mixed woods. It can be home grown for harvesting all year round. However in the wild, you’ll find them in season between August – December.
The Almond Mushroom has a characteristic shape, which resembles an oddly shaped mushroom. The cap can be various shades of brown. The fruit body is solid and the cap is often as high as the diameter is.
The almond smell of these mushrooms varies in intensity, depending on the location. Some smell so strongly of almonds that they can only be used as a flavoring.
These mushrooms initially have white gills but the gills turn to dark brown with age.
The mushroom originally grown in the wild in Brazil and Argentina under tropical conditions is now produced fresh every day in the Netherlands.
The production of almond mushroom takes about three months starting with the substrate phase just as is the case with most home grown mushrooms.
Culinary and Medicinal effects
Almond mushroom has a high percentage of dry matter as such, it loses little moisture during preparation.The fungus is well known as a medicinal mushroom due to its purported medicinal properties. It is highly valued in gastronomy as well as for stimulating immune properties. Besides evidence that almond mushrooms may up-regulate the immune system, additional research suggests the mushroom has a beneficial effect on cholesterol, and inhibiting pathogenic factors.
These mushrooms only have white gills at the immature stage. One should be very careful to ensure that the gills turn brown with age. Never eat a mushroom with white gills in the belief that it is a field mushroom unless you have established that you are looking at the immature stage of an Agaricus.0