Can these ‘shaggy’ mushrooms replace lobster?
KATIE MATHER: Are these hairy little mushrooms better than lobster? Yes, it's very weird that I am comparing a fungus to a sea creature, but TikTok makes me do a lot of weird things.
So lion's mane mushrooms are described as shaggy. Gag. [GAGS] Disgusting. Why would you ever want to eat something that's described as shaggy? But they allegedly have a ton of health benefits, including alleviating stress and boosting your immune system. So maybe we can overlook the shagginess. But I am actually going to brave eating these shaggy, hairy mushrooms to see if they actually taste like seafood because TikTok says that these are a perfect vegetarian replacement when it comes to lobster rolls or crab dip or what have you.
Cooking lion's mane mushroom is actually really easy. If I'm saying that, then it is genuinely very, very easy. Put all of your chopped mushrooms in a saucepan and cook it for 8 to 10 minutes, and then once you're done, I added just a bunch of mayo. I added a little bit of hot sauce, and I added some lemon juice to sort of replicate what lobster salad would look like, and then I put it in a potato roll and bam.
How I will be grading these vegetarian alternatives to lobster rolls is out of 10. The first five points will be dedicated to appearance. How similar does lion's mane mushrooms when all dressed up look to a lobster roll? The second will be taste. Do these taste like a lobster roll? It's all very straightforward. But the final score will be out of 10, and we will see if this is a very viable option to serve your vegetarian friends.
And here they are, the finished product. I can't believe this is actually mushroom. I'm really, really surprised. I thought this was going to be a total fail. In terms of appearance, though, I mean, this is definitely like a four out of five. If someone just handed this to you on the street-- I don't know why that would happen. But if someone did, you would think it was fish. So yeah, I'm pretty surprised by how-- how much this looks like fish.
OK, now it's time to actually try it. I'm a little nervous. That does remind me of lobster. It's not bad at all. The only way I would be able to tell that this was not lobster is the texture. These mushrooms are a lot softer than lobster is. I'm pretty impressed.
In terms of taste, I'm going to give this a 4.5. The only reason why I'm deducting that half a point is because it is so soft. All in all, lion's mane mushrooms as an alternative to fish sandwiches, lobster rolls, what have you is 8.5 out of 10, which is very high score, especially for me because I am very particular.