I picked up a couple packages of these Malayasian snacks in a Vietnamese grocery in Milwaukee, fully expecting to be grossed out or at least underwhelmed by some artificially flavored chipsimile. Turns out they’re real mushrooms–not the kind you reconstitute in liquid, more like those freeze-dried vegetable snacks you find in Whole Foods. At first they were somewhat repellent, with a texture reminiscent of dirt, but gradually the mildly sweet, earthy flavor and the texture of the stems–which reminds me of one of those Lorna Doone shortbread cookies–won me over. The black-pepper-flavor ones have a nice kick, stronger than the wasabi, which are far milder than those sinus-scouring snack peas.
If you see these around town anywhere, $2 a bag isn’t a bad gamble.