There are a wide variety of mushrooms to choose from, the most popular and commonly used of these earthy tasting gems can usually be found at the grocery store. I suggest trying all the varieties of mushrooms to see which ones you like best! The common varieties include: chanterelle, enoki, morel, oyster, shiitake, button, cremini, and Portobello.
How to Pick and Store Mushrooms:
A few tips when picking mushrooms: pick ones that look heavy for their size; leave the ones with damp or dark or slimy spots behind; select ones that are close to the same size – this will make preparing them much easier; and pick out the ones that have dry, firm caps and stems.
Store unwashed in a brown paper bag, a lightly dampened paper towel, or even the packaging they came in. If your grocer only has plastic produce bags, be sure not to store them in a closed bag because they will be unable to breath and deteriorate much faster. Also, they’ll last longer if stored on the fridge shelf and not in the crisper.
How to Prepare Mushrooms:
When cleaning, do so just before you are about to use them. To clean, gently brush away the dirt with a soft brush or wipe with a damp paper towel. If they’re really dirty, give them a quick rinse – mushrooms are made of 90% water, so they won’t become water logged if rinsed. Rinsing actually makes cleaning them easier. After being cleaned, mushrooms can be chopped, sliced, grated, torn or left whole.
Enjoy mushrooms raw or cooked!
Kary’s Mushroom Tips:
- Have a lot of mushrooms to slice? An egg slicer is a fun way to slice mushrooms and it cuts the work in half. Also, try using the slicing wheel attachment in your food processor. It’s a super fast way to slice a large amount of mushrooms.
- If a recipe calls for finely chopped mushrooms, grate them instead. It’s a great time saver. Use this technique to sneak the great flavour of mushrooms any dish your serving a picky eater – like meatloaf and pasta.
- For mushrooms to brown, they must first release their juices. Cook mushrooms over medium heat until they begin to release their liquid, then turn the heat to high until the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms begin to brown and smell slightly nutty.
- The longer you cook a Portobello mushroom the tougher they become.
What Goes Well With Mushrooms?
Asparagus, bacon, butter, chives, eggs, cheese, ham, leeks, marjoram, olive oil, pepper, cream, lemon, garlic, shallots, onions, cheese, fennel, fish, chicken, veal, peas, dill, parsley, tarragon, basil, oregano, rosemary, sherry, stocks, thyme, vinegar, and wine.