King Oyster


King Oyster is large, heavy, fleshy, and unlike any other cultivated Oyster mushroom. Although quality varies, the dense bright-white stalks and creamy concave tan caps are usually thick and solid. This mushroom grows in clusters which join at the base and not in overlapping caps like other Oyster mushrooms. It is sweet and meaty and often grows on the decaying roots of plants in the carrot family. It can also be cultivated on chopped straw. As with all Oyster mushrooms, King Oysters need plenty of fresh air to develop normally. High carbon dioxide levels from mushroom metabolism will accumulate in sealed growing environments and can reduce cap size and elongate stems severely. Fruiting in open humidity chambers with frequent fresh air exchange will produce best possible yields.


king oyster mushroom also referred to as the King Eryngii, the King Oyster is a beautiful specimen and is even used to decorate!! Great value for money, the King Oyster is a delicious alternative to the Porcini. Try serving it in a creamy ragout on thick toasted bread.


As its name suggests, king oyster mushroom (杏鲍菇) belongs to the oyster mushroom family and it’s the largest kind of this genus. Unlike common oyster mushrooms which have big caps and small stems, king oyster mushroom has a fairly small, round cap, but a large, chunky stem which is the main part to enjoy in dishes

ALSO what makes King oyster mushroom special is its rich umami flavour and its firm, springy texture which resembles that of abalone (marine snails). That explains why you find the character “鲍”, meaning abalone, in the Chinese name of king oyster mushroom.

However, there are many ways to enjoy this delicacy. I love it in a hot pot, simply grilled with salt & spices or in a good stir-fry, like today’s recipe, with Sichuan garlic sauce.


Moreover, garlic sauce refers to a type of stir fry seasoning which originated in Sichuan and which creates a complex flavour known as “Yu Xiang/鱼香”, literally meaning “Fish Fragrant”. Furthermore, there are two popular theories explaining the reason behind the name:

  • The pickled chillies used in Yu Xiang sauce were traditionally fermented with a whole fish in the jar have a look at the image of this unique type of pickle that I saw on my Culinary Tour of China last year

Here is the list of ingredients for the garlic sauce which creates a tangy, spicy, sweet & sour taste.

  • Garlic. Use a generous amount and mince it well.
  • Chillies. You may use fresh chillies. However, If time permits I highly recommend you make some Pickled Chili Garlic Sauce which offers a more complex flavour.
  • Black rice vinegar
  • Soy sauce
  • Shaoxing rice wine. You may replace it with Baijiu (Chinese white liquor) or dry sherry.
  • Sugar
  • Cornstarch. It’s for thickening the sauce to nicely coat the mushrooms.

 You can find other delicious dishes using the same set of ingredients on my blog, such as Shredded Pork with Garlic Sauce (鱼香肉丝), Eggplant with Garlic Sauce (鱼香茄子), Pan-fried Tofu with Garlic Sauce (鱼香豆腐).


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