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Shiitake ( Lentinula edodes )

Class : Agaricomycetes
Subclass : Agaricomycetidae
Order : Mushroom-like (Agaricales)
Family : Omphalotaceae
Genre : Lentinula
Type : Shiitake
Scientific name
Lentinula edodes
( Berk. ) Pegler

The Shiitake or Shii-Take ( Lentinula edodes , syn. Lentinus edodes ; Chinese  冬菇 , Pinyin dōnggū / 香菇 , xiānggū / 花菇 , huāgū , outdated: 椎 茸 , zhuīróng , Japanese 椎 茸 shiitake ) is a mushroom species from the family of the Omphalotaceae. Classically it was classified under the knight relatives (Tricholomataceae) or the stem porlings (Polyporales). The Japanese name Shiitake means mushroom ( take - ) that grows on the Pasania tree ( shii - ); the mushroom is therefore also called Pasaniapilz in German .

It is counted among the most effective medicinal mushrooms in traditional Chinese medicine . Pharmacologically effective ingredients have been proven by scientific studies.


The mushroom has a light to dark brown hat and grows on various deciduous trees, preferably on those with hard wood. It has long been grown in China and Japan, e.g. B. on beech , oak , chestnut , maple , walnut and others. The lamellas run down the handle and are smooth to rough. The stem is usually in the middle of the hat, but can also be attached to the side. The brim of the hat is still rolled inwards when it is young. The hat skin is usually covered with delicate flakes. In China, the Shiitake is dōnggū - 冬菇 - or xiānggū - 香菇 - called, which can be described as "mushroom of winter" or "fragrant mushroom" and refers to the fine, mushroom-like fragrance that it is in the fresh or especially in the exuded dry state. In contrast, huāgū - 花菇 , the king of the shiitake mushrooms. It has a slightly dark surface (mushroom hat); the mushroom body, the "top of the cup", is covered with patterns of white furrows, which gave it its name: "patterned (Shiitake) mushroom". The "underside of the calyx" (mushroom lamellae) is slightly yellow.


2011-09-18 Lentinula edodes (Berk.) Pegler 196907 mod.jpg

It occurs wild in the forests of China and Japan, but the mushrooms available on the market there all come from farms. For this purpose, trees are traditionally felled in the growth phase when the nutrients under the bark taste sweet. The freshly cut surfaces of the trees felled in this way form an ideal food base for the spores of the shiitake mushrooms. It does not occur in the wild in Europe and North America , but it is also increasingly being cultivated here.


The systematic position of Shiitake was unclear for a long time. So it was once placed in the genus of the saw blades ( Lentinus ) and thus in the family stem porlings (Polyporaceae) or the order of the stem porlings (Polyporales). Alternatively, it was also placed in its own genus Lentinula and assigned to the order of the mushroom-like (Agaricales), a step that is currently recognized. The systematic position within the mushroom species was not clear for a long time until genetic studies helped. Initially, the genus was placed in the family of vertigo relatives (Marasmiaceae). Later, on the basis of detailed family trees, it was recognized that the genus Lentinula belongs to the family of Omphalotaceae , which is the sister taxon to the vertigo relatives. This means that the Shiitake is close to the poisonous olive mushrooms (genus Omphalotus ), but also to the carrots i. w. S. (e.g. genera Gymnopus and Rhodocollybia ) and dwarf dwarves (genus Marasmiellus ) related.


Cooked shiitake with garlic

Edible mushroom

After the mushroom , it is the most widely grown edible mushroom . In East Asia it is number one among the cultivated mushrooms, and it is now very common in Russia . There are essentially two types on the market: the best-selling dōnggū - 冬菇 , synonymous with Donko , Tongku or Tonggu - a thick-fleshed, firm mushroom with a hat that is barely open, and koshin , a thin -fleshed mushroom with a wide-open hat.

Shiitake have the taste quality umami . Modern science has now recognized umami as the fifth taste quality that can be perceived through the tongue, alongside sweet, salty, bitter and sour. Umami is created by the presence of glutamate and activates special taste receptors on the tongue. It contributes to the taste of protein-rich foods such as meat, legumes and some mushrooms.

The main flavorings, which are also responsible for the radish-like odor, have been identified as cyclic sulfur compounds: lenthionine; 1, 2, 4, 5, - and 1, 2, 3, 5-tetrathiane, trithiolane and the amino acid eritadenine.

Is discouraged from Rohgenuss because the shiitake hemagglutination (the clumping of blood) lectins includes, but these are destroyed by cooking.

Allergy-like skin reaction

Originally, the recommendation was to keep a cooking time of twenty minutes when using fresh mushrooms, as otherwise, in rare cases, allergic skin reactions (shiitake dermatitis ) could occur. It is now assumed that lentinan (probably the active ingredient responsible for skin reactions) is heat-resistant and that shiitake dermatitis can also occur after consuming cooked and fried mushrooms. Despite the very frequent use of shiitake as an edible mushroom worldwide, only relatively few cases of shiitake dermatitis have become known, especially in Germany.


The shiitake contains some pharmacologically interesting active ingredients, such as B .:

  • EP3, a glycoprotein that is said to have an immune stimulating effect.
  • Eritadenine, an amino acid - 3 (R) -dihydroxy-4- (9-adenyl) -butyric acid - which lowers cholesterol . Shiitake contains 400–700 mg per kg of dry matter.
  • LEM, a glycoprotein that is said to have an immune-stimulating and tumor-inhibiting effect.
  • Lentinan, a polysaccharide that is said to have an immune stimulating and antiviral effect. However, Lentinan is suspected of causing shiitake dermatitis (see above).
  • KS-2, a polysaccharide that is said to have anti-tumor effects against sarcoma 180 cell lines and Ehrlich's carcinoma .

The shiitake also contains vitamins C, B 1 , B 2 , B 12 , D and niacin. The vitamin D concentration is comparatively high at 22–110 µg per 100 g dry matter.

Folk medicine

In Japan and China, Shiitake is used as a medicinal food, known as Japanese Yakuzen - 薬 膳 , Chinese Yàoshàn - 藥膳  /  药膳 , like other mushrooms and vegetables, a targeted application for inflammation , tumors , stomach ailments, headaches, dizziness, liver cirrhosis and arteriosclerosis . More frequent meals with shiitake are said to alleviate the symptoms mentioned. For this purpose, the mushrooms are boiled, fried or stewed. There is also boiled rice, sushi or vegetables. The whole thing is seasoned with miso , soy sauce or tomato sauce .


Shiitake has been valued as food and medicine in China and Japan for thousands of years . Shiitake was so valuable to people in the past that it was suitable as a gift for emperors and kings: In 199, the inhabitants of the Japanese province of Kyūshū are said to have offered the then emperor Chūai Shiitake as a gift. There are also much older Chinese sources on the use of shiitake.


Even today, the shiitake or dōnggū has retained its high value in nutrition in Japan and China. High-quality dried shiitake mushrooms are still considered a delicacy today and still fetch high prices in the East Asian countries - China, South Korea , Japan. When visiting families, the dried mushroom is therefore still welcomed as a gift or souvenir from connoisseurs - especially traditional or older people.


  • Nicola Krämer, Jutta Grimm: Shiitake and oyster mushrooms . pala-verlag, Darmstadt 2002, ISBN 3-89566-184-8 .
  • Christopher Hobbs: Medicinal Mushrooms . Botanica Press, Santa Cruz 1995.
  • EJG Sastre: Shiitake. The Japanese chestnut mushroom, an Asian elixir of life . Verlag Natur und Gesundheit, Bad Aibling 1999.

Web links

Wiktionary: Shiitake  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Term "Shiitake - 椎 茸". In: Wadoku . Retrieved May 1, 2020 (German, Japanese).
  2. Term "Shiitake - 椎 茸". In: Retrieved May 1, 2020 (Chinese).
  3. Term “Shiitake - 香菇 or 冬菇”. In: . Retrieved May 1, 2020 (Chinese, German).
  4. a b c Torda Varga, Krisztina Krizsán, Csenge Földi, Bálint Dima, Marisol Sánchez-García: Megaphylogeny resolves global patterns of mushroom evolution . In: Nature Ecology & Evolution . tape 3 , no. 4 , April 2019, ISSN  2397-334X , p. 668-678 , doi : 10.1038 / s41559-019-0834-1 ( ).
  5. ^ Term “take - 茸”. In: Wadoku . Retrieved May 1, 2020 (German, Japanese).
  6. ^ Term "Shii - 椎". In: Wadoku . Retrieved May 1, 2020 (German, Japanese).
  7. a b c d e f g h i j P.S. Bisen, RK Baghel, BS Sanodiya, GS Thakur, GBKS Prasad: Lentinus edodes: A Macrofungus with Pharmacological Activities . In: Current Medicinal Chemistry . tape 17 , 2010, p. 2419-2430 .
  8. ^ A b P. Brandon Matheny, Judd M. Curtis, Valérie Hofstetter, M. Catherine Aime, Jean-Marc Moncalvo, Zai-Wei Ge, Zhu-Liang Yang, Jason C. Slot, Joseph F. Ammirati, Timothy J. Baroni , Neale L. Bougher, Karen W. Hughes, D. Jean Lodge, Richard W. Kerrigan, Michelle T. Seidl, Duur K. Aanen, Matthew DeNitis, Graciela M. Daniele, Dennis E. Desjardin, Bradley R. Kropp, Lorelei L. Norvell, Andrew Parker, Else C. Vellinga, Rytas Vilgalys, David S. Hibbett: Major clades of Agaricales: a multilocus phylogenetic overview . In: Mycologia . tape 98 (6) . Mycological Society of America, 2006, pp. 982-995 ( [PDF; 1.9 MB ]).
  9. Bryn TM Dentinger, Ester Gaya, Heath O'Brien, Laura M. Suz, Robert Lachlan: Tales from the crypt: genome mining from fungarium specimens improves resolution of the mushroom tree of life . In: Biological Journal of the Linnean Society . tape 117 , no. 1 , January 2016, p. 11-32 , doi : 10.1111 / bij.12553 .
  10. a b Jadson JS Oliveira, Ruby Vargas-Isla, Tiara S. Cabral, Doriane P. Rodrigues, Noemia K. Ishikawa: Progress on the phylogeny of the Omphalotaceae: Gymnopus s. str., Marasmiellus s. str., Paragymnopus gen. nov. and Pusillomyces gen. nov. In: Mycological Progress . tape 18 , no. 5 , May 2019, ISSN  1617-416X , p. 713-739 , doi : 10.1007 / s11557-019-01483-5 .
  11. a b c d Health risk of shiitake mushrooms. (PDF; 102 kB) Federal Institute for Risk Assessment , June 23, 2004, accessed on February 5, 2012 (statement).
  12. a b Pirjo Mattila, Karoliina Suonpää, Vieno Piironen: Functional properties of edible mushrooms . In: Nutrition . tape 16 , no. 7-8 , July 2000, pp. 694-696 , doi : 10.1016 / S0899-9007 (00) 00341-5 .