Monday, January 11, 2021

Lion's Mane "Crab" Cakes

I love it when I discover something new ... and I certainly didn't know before that lion's mane mushrooms taste, and cook up, just like crab! Who knew? I love that I can add this in to my meatless rotation, and it's so tasty that my meatlovers in the family don't even miss their actual meat! These take a little bit of time. It helps to dry out the mushrooms in the oven, as they tend to be more moist than crab. However, the results are well worth the time! Now, I've never seen these mushrooms in my supermarket, but I did find them at the farmer's market. Here in Sacramento, Dragon Gourmet Mushrooms attends several of our local markets, and the lion's mane have been available each time I've visited. They offer a recipe for "crab" cakes at their booth, which was the inspiration for this recipe. Thanks for another inspiring visit at the farmer's market! 


8 ounces lion's mane mushrooms
1 tsp olive oil
2 green onions, white and green parts cut into 1/4 inch lengths
1 clove garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, cut in half lengthwise, then cut into 1/4 inch lengths
2 Tbs. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp soy sauce
1 egg
1 Tbs Italian parsley, minced
1/2 tsp dried basil (or 1 Tbs fresh)
1/2 tsp salt
several grinds pepper
1/2 cup panko, bread crumbs, or gluten free panko
1 tsp to 1 Tbs lemon juice
1 tsp olive oil


1 Tbs. mayonnaise
1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp paprika
1 Tbs. lemon juice
1/4 tsp pepper
dash Sriracha or hot sauce


Preheat the oven to 350F. Slice the lion's mane mushroom into 1/2 inch thick slices. Lightly spray a baking pan with spray on olive oil and arrange the mushrooms in a single layer on the pan. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until the mushrooms are beginning to dry out and have some light brown spots on them. Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes. Prepare the rest of the ingredients for the crab cakes while the mushrooms are in the oven. Add the olive oil to a nonstick pan on the stove top and heat over medium heat. Add the green onion, garlic and celery and cook for about 2 minutes, just until they get soft and lose some of their snap. Remove from heat and let cool. Mix the mayo, soy sauce, egg, parsley, basil, salt and pepper in a bowl. Add the cooled vegetables and mushrooms to the bowl and mix. Add the panko or bread crumbs and mix. Add enough lemon juice so that the mixture is soft enough to form cakes, but still hold together. Form into 4 regular size patties, with one small patty for testing. Heat the final teaspoon of olive oil in the skillet. Add the test patty to the pan, and make sure it has enough moisture to stay together. Add more lemon juice to the mixture if the patty falls apart during cooking. Cook the remaining patties. Cook the patties for about 2 minutes per side. Make the sauce while the patties are cooking by mixing all the sauce ingredients together. To serve, place a patty or two for each serving and some sauce alongside. 

Serves 2 as a main course or 4 as a side dish

Stealthy Cooking Tip: Lions' mane mushrooms have been much lauded for their health benefits for thousands of years. They're high in antioxidants, and have been touted as helping lower inflammation and improving mental functioning. They probably won't become part of your daily diet, but however often you eat them, I think you'll agree, they're delicious! 

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