Information -- mushrooms

Yield: 1 Servings

Measure Ingredient
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The selection of mushrooms in produce departments and farmers markets is becoming more varied. If you're confused by what you're buying and how to use and store them, here are a few tips: Look for dry, not slimy, mushrooms. They should be firm and smell clean, never moldy. At home, keep them in the refrigerator in a brown paper bag.

Never keep them in a plastic bag, because they will turn into a slimy, smelly mess. Unless they're dried, use them as soon as possible. Don't wash mushrooms until you're ready to use them.

Some mycological authorities recommend cooking all mushroom varieties, rather than eating them raw.

Cepes: Usually found dried: they're also called porcini. They are large, white to reddish-brown with fat, beige stems. The flavor is like that of a hazelnut. They're great in chicken, fish or pasta dishes. Grill or marinate them and serve them with red meat. They're good in sauces, too.

Chanterelles: Yellowish and trumpet-shaped. The flavor is spicy; some say they have a slight apricot taste. They're also chewy. They're fabulous sauteed with a little butter, or try them in vegetable dishes, omelets or sauces. They'll knock your socks off in stroganoff.

Enoki: The word means snow-puff in Japanese. Cultivated ones are a bright white, while wild ones are large and darker. They are flower-shaped, with a long stem and tiny cap. Use them raw or toss them into stir-fry. They're the perfect garnish.

Morels: Some people consider these the ultimate mushroom because of their rich, real mushroom flavor. They are cone-shaped and can be yellow or black. The darker the color, the richer the flavor. These are fantastic cooked in stuffing, sauces, sautes, meat and poultry dishes.

Oyster: Also known as monkey head; gray to white with a large cap. It has hardly any stem. Oysters are fragrant and especially good in seafood dishes. Some people think they have a slight lobster-like flavor when sauteed. They are out of this world when stir-fried with scallops.

Shiitake: A pretty mushroom with a large, floppy brown cap and a thick, brown stem. You can grill, saute, stuff or marinate it. Shiitakes will enhance any stew or meat dish. Try them in a cream sauce.

Recipe by: Oregonian's Food Day Posted to MC-Recipe Digest V1 #824 by LBotsko@... on Oct 4, 1997

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