We all have heard or read the news about some ingredients like Himalayan salt or black pepper which are as expensive as the cost of the most expensive bag in your cupboard. India is a land of exotic and indigenous ingredients and many of them will burn a hole in your pocket. But do you know about wild mushrooms, which grow in the foothills of the Himalayas and are the most expensive and exclusive ingredient? Gucci mushroom is the most exotic ingredient which costs around Rs 30,000 per kg.
Wild mushroom is also scientifically known as Morel mushroom or Morchella esculenta and is in huge demand despite their cost. They are locally called ‘guchi’ in the Himalayan region and are prized for their spongy, honeycomb texture and a unique taste. Mushrooms cannot be cultivated commercially and instead they become wild only after a period of snowfall in certain areas such as Kangra Valley, Jammu and Kashmir, Manali and other parts of Himachal Pradesh.
The villagers start the painstaking process of collecting wild mushrooms around March which continues till the end of May. Finding mushrooms is a painful process for villagers as villagers must have sharp eyesight and there are chances that they may miss seeing them as they never grow in one place. These mushrooms are extremely delicate and need to be handled with care. The entire process takes months to reach the market.
Health Benefits of Gucci Mushrooms
These mushrooms also have many health benefits. Reportedly, they are rich in potassium, vitamins and copper. They are also a rich source of vitamin D in addition to several B-vitamins. They also prevent cholesterol from rising.
We can cook a lot of dishes with Gucci, namely Gucci Casserole which is one of the most popular. Gucci’s Madara, Gucci Musallam to name a few.