In Japan, many people consider “mushrooms” as seasonal autumn ingredients. Also, at this time of year, fresh, delicious rice are sold in many markets. Therefore, for this dish, I chose rice cooked with the delicious Maitake mushrooms with flavorful aromas.
Maitake mushrooms can be easily found in supermarkets regardless of the season, but natural Maitake mushrooms will start to be available from September to late October. There are many theories about how the name came about. The Japanese Kanji character literally means “dancing mushrooms”. Legend has it that this delicacy used to be so rare and delicious that those who find it will be so joyful they’ll start to dance.
Maitake mushrooms go well with dishes that use oils and fats such as tempura or butter saute, so I prepared rice cooked with high-quality olive oil and green olives. It is also a nice finishing touch to sprinkle some ground pepper before serving.
The vessel I used this time is a stylish wooden bowl with a beautiful grain that makes you feel the soft and warm textures of zelkova wood when you hold it. I also used a plate with a unique and playful design as the underplate to accentuate the unique combination of olives and maitake mushrooms.