Mushrooms have proven to be popular and beloved in countries and cultures the world over. In France, large “Champignons,” or large mushrooms, have been used in professional cooking for years. They are made as appetizers or as the basis for sauces. In Tuscany, Italy, a special mushroom based soup called “Acquacotta” is made using them, along with garlic and eggs. In Great Britain, mushrooms have been eaten either fried or grilled for centuries. Mushrooms are delicious and nutritious, containing few calories and a great deal of Phosphorus and Potassium. They are quite satisfying to eat, and can be cooked a variety of ways. This article discusses the step by step methods for cooking mushrooms well.
Butter or Olive Oil
Mushrooms need to be thoroughly cleaned and washed before they are ready to be cooked. There are two ways of doing this. You could get a vegetable scrubbing brush, specifically a mushroom cleaning brush, and scrub them well. Alternatively, you can use a moist towel to wipe them down, or put all of the mushrooms that you will work with into a bowel of water and soak them thoroughly.
Once the mushrooms are well cleaned, you need to cut them. Mushrooms can be sliced up into either chunks or slices, whichever you prefer. Smaller mushrooms you might just leave whole and not cut them up. You can mix and match different types of mushrooms together, if you prefer.
Sauteing the Mushrooms
Now comes the point where you have to decide how you will cook the mushrooms. A very tasty way to prepare mushrooms involves sauteing them. To do this style of cooking mushrooms, all that you have to decide on is whether you will saute them in butter or olive oil, or alternatively a combination of the two.
Once you have selected your mode, saute the mushrooms over high heat in the butter or olive oil. After the mushrooms start to soak up the oil or butter and to cook, they will exude water. Keep cooking them thoroughly, stirring them around the pan with a spatula or spoon, until you reach the point where all of the fluids are absorbed or cooked out. The mushrooms will be a nice golden color now, and tender as well. At this point, you can get creative, if you feel so inclined. You might pour a couple of tablespoons of red wine or cooking sherry over the cooked mushrooms and then wait while the liquid soaks in for a few seconds. You might toss the prepared mushrooms with a variety of chopped up herbs. Some good choices include parsley, rosemary, scallion, as well as a judicious amount of salt and pepper.
Roasting the Mushrooms
Another good way of cooking the mushrooms is to roast them. To do this, you will require some salt and pepper, a bit of olive oil, and even some garlic would be nice. Baste the mushrooms in this concoction. Place them in a preheated four hundred degree oven for a good thirty minutes, or until they turn a pleasing golden color and are tender, too.
Hints and Suggestions
Before adding mushrooms into a braise or a stew, you should first saute them. Add the prepared mushrooms at the end of the braise or stew’s cooking time. This is necessary because mushrooms shrink up as they cook. This means that if you stews them for too long, then you will stay with only tiny bits and pieces.
Another thing to keep in mind when you are cooking mushrooms is that you should not over crowd them in the pan. So doing drops the temperature of the heat too much. They will not brown evenly and nicely if the heat drops excessively.
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