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Black Fungi

Black fungi is scientifically known as Auricularia polytricha

Black fungi is scientifically known as Auricularia polytricha. It is commonly known as cloud ear fungus, black fungus, wood ear fungus, wood fungus, tree fungus or ear fungus. It is also known as pinyin: yún’ěr, lit in Chinese. In Philippines it is known as tenga ng daga meaning the rat’s ear due to its unique shape. People in south East Asia know it by the name of bok nee. The black fungi are found in wet forests or deciduous forests. Black fungi are often found on decaying branches and twigs in the forest. These fungi grow in clusters.

Black Fungi

It grows close to the ground and often grows laterally. It ranges from yellowish to brownish in colour. They generally have a short stalk. They are gelatinous and elastic in nature. Until few years ago only dried variety of black fungi was available in Australia, however now black fungi is cultivated in Australia and is available absolutely fresh. Dried wood ear mushrooms have to be soaked in water for at least twenty minutes before using them.

Black fungus is tasteless and is widely used for adding fine texture to food. Many Asian cuisines use it for creating contrasting textures in different dishes. Black fungus is ideal for soups and casseroles. It is also widely used in stir fry dishes. Its crunchy texture makes it a good ingredient in salads as well.

Black Fungi Health Benefits

Recent studies have shown that wood ear mushrooms or black fungus possess anti-coagulant properties. It is said to be effective in lowering LDL cholesterol and aortic atherosclerotic plaque

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