My family gave me a mushroom growing kit for my birthday. The kit was from Mushroom Gourmet and was for Oyster Mushrooms but they also have a kit for Button Mushrooms. It comes with everything you need except the mushroom spawn. A few days before you want to start growing, you simply email or txt the supplied number giving the voucher number from your kit and they send the spawn to you.
First you soak the straw in water for 2-3 days and then let it drain for an hour. Make a hole in the middle and add the mushroom spawn. Shake it up to distribute the spawn and then squeeze out the air and secure the bag. Cut 8-10 small crosses in the bag; wrap the growing bag in the white cloth and put it back in the box. Place in a spot out of the sun but not in total darkness, with the top of the box open. Somewhere from 12-24C is best.
After a week you shake the growing bag up and put it into a large plastic bag with the top folded over loosely. After another week you put some sheets of wet newspaper in the bottom of the plastic bag and leave the top open. It takes another 1-2 weeks before you start to see mushrooms growing out through the crosses, and then you gradually remove the protective cloth to allow them to breathe and grow. You pick the mushrooms once they start to flatten out.
You can get a second and third flush from your kit, and if you want to you can keep the culture going so that you can keep growing mushrooms. You’ll need to get fresh straw, sawdust or leaves for this.
I discovered that the best way to get the mushrooms to grow quickly is to go away for a couple of days. The only problem then was that they released their spores everywhere so that a white carpet of dust covered the floor and much of the furniture as well.
Oyster mushrooms have been eaten for hundreds of years in Europe and Asia, and are the second most consumed mushroom in the world. They can be used in any way you would eat field mushrooms.
I sautéd mine using the recipe below and tried them on toast, in an omelette and served with broccoli. Delicious!
1 tbsp vegetable oil
400g oyster mushrooms
2 tsp cider vinegar
Heat oil in a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat until hot. Sauté mushrooms until golden, about 8 minutes. Add vinegar and sauté until evaporated, about 1 minute. Season with salt if desired.