Sometimes I would like to add some mushrooms to a dish, but I do not have any fresh mushrooms on hand. My old standby is to keep a little can of button mushrooms in the pantry just for this situation. This works in a pinch, but I wish I could find something better.
Mushrooms come dried, frozen, jarred, canned, and sometimes in a little spice shaker. What experiences have you guys had cooking with preserved mushrooms? Is there a type or a brand or type that is a cut above the rest?
Dried porcini and dried funnel chanterelle. I have a mushroom guy if I need some. Also if it counts, I use a lot of a fermented mushroom sauce, kinda similar to soy sauce, only rounder, a bit sweet and very mushroomy. Oh, and also funnel chanterelle marmelade! It’s really nice with duck.
Dried whole golden oysters and dried (ground to powder) Dryad’s Saddle. The Maitake got ate up too fast to dry any. A couple of weeks and it will be morel season and we hope to find more than the handful we did last year but we also know where other springtime mushrooms grow so no longer feel as sad.
I need to try this with our Dryad’s Saddle this year.
My nephew has a few morel locations he refuses to share (he even wiped the EXIF data from pics he sent me), but we have a plot of chanterelles we harvest from each year. There’s been talk of a summit in 2017.
We do: fried in butter and then sprinkled with salt or small slivers stirfried with veggies &meat. I’ll warn you, though, they stink to high heaven while cooking but have a decent taste (which doesn’t taste like the cooking smell). You can only fry pieces that you cut from the cap that are soft enough to have been cut by a butter knife. Anything else is like chewing tasty leather.
Which is why we dehydrate the rest and blender into powder. That gets sprinkled on roasts or put in soups or stews. It acts as both a flavoring and a thickener.
Dried mushrooms have way more flavor than fresh since you can’t really completely re-hydrate them. Which means use less than what you think you need and use the water you re-hydrate them in … it picks up the mush flavor too.
If you have an Asian market around you, they will have dried shitake mushrooms.
Simmer them 5 or 10 minutes (until they are soft), drain, cut out the stem section of the mushroom and add them to your dish.
They will come in a plastic bag. I always store extras in a sealed glass container. They will last a long time.
Porcinis or morels are also wonderful dried, but are much more expensive.
Canned mushrooms don’t sound very appealing. For non-fresh, I always have dried porcini around. They’re handy for sauces, gravies, and when making flavored rice with various types of broth.
I also tend to keep a small box of fresh cremini (brown button) mushrooms in the fridge. They keep for up to a couple of weeks and are handy for lots of things – marinated and grilled with steak, sauteed or oven-roasted whole for spaghetti, sliced for pizza, etc.
Dried porcini is what my Polish family used, so that’s what I have around. (A typical mushroom soup would have both fresh button mushrooms and rehydrated porcinis with the leftover mushroom water used from rehydrating them.)
Canned mushrooms aren’t terribly good although I will sometimes have them on pizza in order to recreate a certain childhood memory of pizzas with canned mushrooms on them. I know it sounds weird, but there’s even a pizza place a few miles from my house that explicitly gives you the option of canned or fresh mushrooms when you order, so I know I’m not the only person who, whether for nostalgia’s sake or other reasons, occasionally does opt for canned.