New spinneysFOOD vitamin D-enriched mushrooms

Your daily dose of sunshine

Mushrooms are up there with the most versatile of veggies. Their sponge-like texture soaks up flavour, they’re low in calories and are a great occasional alternative to both meat (we’re looking at you, mushroom burgers) and carbohydrates. They also hold a hefty amount of nutrients, minerals and antioxidants, and as we're about to see, have lots of good-for-us vitamins in every beautiful bite.

The facts

A study conducted by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) states that despite the abundant sunshine in the UAE, the region suffers from one of the highest rates of vitamin D deficiency in the world – up to 85%, in fact. This means that our chances of reaping the benefits of vitamin D, which include maintaining regular muscle and cardiovascular activity as well as keeping the immune system functioning as normal, are lower than average.

The funghi

Fortunately, mushrooms are adept at absorbing a significant amount of vitamin D when exposed to UV light, which brings us to the latest member of the spinneysFOOD family to hit the shelves: our new vitamin D-enriched mushrooms.

These brown chestnut mushrooms from Ireland are carefully cultivated under special light, which converts their existing sterols – molecules that function as a precursor to vitamins – into vitamin D (just as our bodies do). This means that just six of these gems fulfil your daily vitamin D requirement.

The food

While there are plenty of mushrooms in store to choose from – the button, chanterelle, oyster, shiitake and enoki – the addition of this enriched chestnut variety should not be overlooked. See what we mean (and how much the humble mushroom has to give) with a rich and creamy carbonara, charred mushroom salad (just perfect for this barbecue weather!) or a warming bread pudding.