Eringi Mushrooms, Buckwheat Groats and Teriyaki Sauce

eringi_buckpSome dishes suffer from even the tiniest modification, but sometimes what seems a daring crazy fusion idea proves one of the most natural harmony of flavours and textures. Such was the case with buckwheat groats with eringi mushrooms, both seasoned with teriyaki glaze.

Buckwheat grains/groats (sometimes labelled “kasha”) are dried, slightly triangular seeds of a plant (Fagopyrum genus) which is not a grass, nor a cereal, even though it looks like one and is not related to wheat. They are very rich in protein, contain minerals, antioxydants, iron and are gluten free, so they can be consumed by people who don’t tolerate it or try to reduce it. They are particularly popular in certain Eastern and Central European countries, usually consumed in a toasted, nutty tasting version. Reduced to flour, buckwheat is consumed in other countries too and soba noodles are probably now the best known product.

Even though soba noodles are widely consumed, all the Japanese I asked have never tasted untransformed groats. Porridge-like dishes, made with non-toasted groats do exist in Japan (thank you, Hiroyuki, for the links), but I guess it’s difficult to find their fans… Meanwhile, in several Eastern and Central European countries buckwheat groats have been a part of traditional diet for a long time, often served with dishes in sauce, as a carb side-meal, instead of potatoes or bread. Their toasted version is the one most people prefer and know (actually I discovered the non-toasted one only some years ago, finding it utterly bland and pointless). When cooked, they have a smokey, nutty aroma, a slightly crunchy texture (there is a certain resemblance to quinoa or barley) and are perfect with mushroom dishes.

Obviously, I wasn’t surprised that eringi (also called king oyster mushroom, Pleurotus Eryngii), as a particularly versatile mushroom, went well with both buckwheat and teriyaki sauce. Luckily the latter also proved a dream seasoning for buckwheat groats. In short, a simple but delicious autumn recipe I’ll be making with other mushrooms too.

In case you wonder what else to do with buckwheat, you can also fry it like you do with leftover rice:

Fried Buckwheat Groats
Fried Buckwheat Groats

TIPS: Buckwheat groats are not such a crowd-pleaser as white rice, for example, mainly because of their texture, but also because of the strong flavour, so don’t be surprised if you don’t like them (if you are a quinoa/barley fan, there are more chances you like them).

I strongly advise against buying non-toasted, light greenish buckwheat groats. Most buckwheat groats lovers (including me) hate this bland, softer form. Toasted buckwheat groats are luckily easy to recognise: they are simply brown.

Buckwheat groats are easy to overcook (mushy ones are not good at all…), so respect the cooking time and don’t worry if it doesn’t work for the first time. Sometimes it depends on the brand, on the pan, etc..

I prefer my teriyaki sauce less sweet than the one usually served in Japanese restaurants, but feel free to add more mirin or sugar.

Preparation: about 30 minutes

Ingredients (serves two):

150 g/about 5,3 oz toasted buckwheat groats

1/2 teaspoon salt

300 g/about 10,5 oz eringi (king oyster) mushrooms, sliced

Teriyaki sauce:

9 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

3 tablespoons sake

3 tablespoons mirin (sweet cooking sake)

(freshly ground pepper)

Put the buckwheat groats into a cup.

Measure the double of the buckwheat’s volume in water.

Pour the water into a pan. Bring it to a boil, add the salt.

Throw the buckwheat into the pan and let it cook partially covered at medium heat for about ten minutes.

Lower the heat and let it simmer, fully covered, for about 5 more minutes.

The water should be completely absorbed by the grains. If it’s not absorbed yet, put the pan aside, leave the cover on and it will get absorbed without cooking too. (If it’s absorbed, cover the pan anyway and put it aside keeping it warm).

Heat the glaze ingredients in a pan until it thickens.

Put aside.

Grill the mushrooms on a grill or hot pan brushed with oil.

Turn them after 5 minutes and cook 3 more minutes.

Warm the teriyaki glaze while grilling the mushrooms. Mix 2/3 of it with buckwheat groats and 1/3 with mushrooms.

Taste the buckwheat and add some more soy sauce if it’s not salty enough.

Serve the mushrooms on top of buckwheat.

(Sprinkle with freshly ground pepper).


33 Replies to “Eringi Mushrooms, Buckwheat Groats and Teriyaki Sauce”

  1. I enjoyed reading this introduction to a new grain, even though I’m unlikely to be trying it in the near future. I still haven’t tried quinoa either. 🙂 In the meantime, I’ve got a bag of brown bulgur to learn to use. I bought it to make kibbeh, which was pretty good with regular ground beef, and is supposed to be even better with lamb.

    1. Thank you, A_Boleyn. For me it’s nothing new… I have been eating it since I was a small child, but I quickly realised it’s a kind of “novelty” for many countries in the world. (I’m not a big fan of quinoa, but the texture has something similar).

  2. Now I fully understand what buckwheat groats are, and how they should be treated before eating. They must be toasted! That’s quite interesting. Maybe I should get some groats and toast them.

    1. Thank you, Hiroyuki. I find the green buckwheat groats so bad, it’s one of the rare food products I threw away… then I learnt it’s possible to toast it at home (but it was too late…). People from buckwheat eating countries are so used to the toasted version, they cannot imagine it being eaten “raw” (though there are exceptions…).
      I’m not sure if you will like it though… it has a rough texture (not as smooth as rice). Let me know if you want me to send you some roasted buckwheat to taste. I’ll be happy to make you discover it.

    1. Thank you so much, Squishy Monster. I love mushrooms (most of them) and it’s one of the rare vegetarian products that can successfully replace meat in my meals.

  3. I remember that our teacher in school once said that buckwheat will be THE grain of the future. Somehow, it never became that popular after all and I do have to confess that I don’t remember what it tastes like. Not sure if they have it here in India too, difficult to know with different names and languages.
    Thanks for sharing this Sissi, I love daring recipes. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Helene. Yes, buckwheat is a kind of miracle food: it grows very easily (I still wonder why it’s not planted in countries where people die of hunger) and has proteins and some other precious stuff, though I had no idea about it when I used to eat it as a child… (Maybe luckily! Otherwise I would have hated it).

  4. I am not a huge fan of buckwheat unless its accompanied with a strong sauce (such as spicy tomato sauce). Teriyaki sounds like a good alternative. I will give this a try.
    Buckwheat is very popular in Russia also. Blinis are made with buckwheat.
    BTW I tried your vindail recipe with lamb – nice. Thank you. I’ve posted the recipe.

    1. Thank you, Mr. Three-Cookies. Russians eat not only buckwheat flour (blinis) but also the way Poles do, I think… Thank you for letting me know. I’m glad to learn you liked it (lamb seems an excellent idea) and I’m happy to see you blogging again. (I didn’t find it however on your blogs…).

    2. UPDATE: Oh, I see, it’s only on easilygoodeats… I clicked from the link at 3 Cookies thinking you post the same… Anyway, it looks fantastic!

  5. I bought some “brown” buckwheat grouts a few months ago and they’ve been sitting in the pantry patiently waiting for me to do something with them. So thank you first of all, teaching me about what the hell they are, and now how to cook them and use them. I though they would take a lot longer than 15 minutes to cook. That’s exciting to know! Thanks for this recipe Sissi!

    1. I hope you will like buckwheat groats… They are not for everyone and have quite a strong aroma, but do give them a go. Thank you so much for the compliments. I hope my tips will prove useful.

  6. I often make barley “risotto” with dried wild mushrooms so this variation with buckwheat is something I would really like. Toasted buckwheat sounds lovely — I often toast the barley prior to cooking and it does bring out the nutty flavour which really goes well with mushrooms. I will definitely try it with teriyaki sauce next time and like you, I prefer it less sweet.

  7. it’s funny, although I love the soba noodle dishes I see floating around (peanut versions are popular and look delicious) I have always preferred this pseudocereal in groat form. I don’t experiment with it on any frequent basis but I do enjoy kasha on occasion in a warming morning cereal. Seeing the toasted groats here, with your mushrooms in a teriyaki glaze, makes me think I’m missing out on a whole other element of dietary pleasure 😉 — I need to start using buckwheat groats beyond breakfast!

    1. Thank you, Kelly. It’s incredible! You must be one of the rare people in the world to prefer buckwheat and definitely the only one I know who has it for breakfast 😉 (And I do love such things as maki sushi or soups for breakfast!). I hope you will like it with teriyaki sauce too.

  8. Very nice! We (my husband and I )had buckwheat groat last week at the restaurant for the first time and we loved it! Very homey and went well with the duck we ordered. I have not yet seen in the market but I wasn’t looking for it then. I will pay more attention next time I go shopping at Wholefoods, I bet they have it.

    1. Thank you, Nipponnin. I’m so happy to discover you also like buckwheat! For me it’s sometimes a nice change from white rice… I can imagine it being perfect with duck. I must try it one day.

  9. I too have never tried buckwheat groats though have had lots of buckwheat noodles. Funny how each culture takes the same grains and do completely different food out of them eh. I always love learning new things about food when I come to your blog sissi! Love the king oyster mushrooms with teriyaki sauce. That’s my favourite way of cooking them too- they have such rich flavour and a meaty texture they are perfect grilled with a teriyaki glaze/ marinade. Yum!!!

    1. Hi, Shu Han. Thank you so much for the compliments. I’m glad you also like eringi with teriyaki glaze.

  10. First of all let me tell you that the teriyaki word caught immediately my attention as we are all fans of it at home. And then I loved how you combined east and west in a dish. I always say that fusion dishes can be small masterpieces!

    1. Thank you so much, Katerina. I often cook something European and then suddenly feel like adding an Asian touch 😉 It works surprisingly well most of the time.

  11. Buckwheat groats! Nope, I don’t know this at all. Even with my translator doesn’t really translate well. It’s fun to learn more about European diet as I’m not very familiar with it. Love seeing your creation of European ingredients + Japanese flavor. That’s so Sissi style!

    p.s. Did I delete your email newsletter (two new posts!) by accident? I didn’t see them in my inbox… You didn’t change the newsletter right? Maybe I accidentally deleted them.

    1. Thank you so much, Nami. Hiroyuki-san told me it’s called “soba no mi” in Japanese, but since it’s very difficult to find (for me at least) on Japanese websites, I guess it’s rarely consumed in Japan. Hiroyuki gave me some Japanese links to photographs with some kind of thick soba no mi soups, but they didn’t look very appetising, especially since from the colour I am almost sure the groats are not toasted (and I really find them bland in this form).
      I’m so sorry you didn’t receive them… I haven’t changed my newsletter. It’s still the old archaic way 😉 Maybe they were in your spams? I sometimes find certain newsletters in spams even though most of the same newsletters (from the same person) get through normally…

  12. Hello,

    That looks relish and easy to do! I have been looking for recipes at your blog (been snooping around for a while now, sorry!), but then decided to actually let you know of my presence as this looks lovely and I am going to try it soon.

    Buckwheat groats, I have never used though buckwheat flour is quite popular in India and I love to use it for crepes etc.

    So lovely to see your blog doing really well! Hope to be back soon. I have since (baking devil days), started a food and home decor blog with a bit of style and travel thrown it, along with my sister! Couldn’t stay away from writing and cooking for long!

    1. Hello, Shilpa. So nice to see you here! Thank you for all the compliments. I do miss your food blog a lot, but am very happy you have found another project with your sister. I’m hopping to see your website and wish you all the luck! Thank you so much for the visit!

  13. The buckwheat is a very popular grain in my home-country, we eat it a lot, it’s easy to cook, has many health benefits and is a tasty side dish! 🙂
    But eringi mushrooms are totally new to me, never tasted them.. 🙂

    1. Thanks a lot, Mila. I have Polish origins, so I grew up with buckwheat. When I discovered Japanese buckwheat noodles (soba), I thought buckwheat groats must definitely go well with some Japanese flavours such as teriyaki…and I was right! You should try at least the teriyaki sauce. Eringi mushrooms are very special. They look a bit similar to cèpes, but they have a more delicate taste and aroma and a very “meaty” texture. I love them grilled and we are lucky in Switzerland to have them all year round. Thank you for visiting my blog!

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