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Dried mushrooms


Dried mushrooms are a valuable ingredient in cooking. Many of the top chefs of the world use dried mushrooms for the rich aroma and taste that they add to the dishes in which they are used. The up-side of using dried mushrooms is that they can be made at home. This means that you can dry mushrooms at home, powder them, and use them in your dishes.

Mushrooms are usually dried and used for their rich concentration. Due to these properties, they can be used to substitute fresh mushrooms in any dish.
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Once you dry the mushrooms and grind them, you can either use them for seasoning your food or mix them with water and reconstitute them.

How to reconstitute dried mushrooms?


To reconstitute these dried mushrooms, you can place them in warm water in a cup. Try not to use a lot of water for the reconstitution or you will end up diluting them to a large extent and that will result in a loss of flavor. Once you have dried the mushrooms, you can put them in a container and fill it up halfway. Slowly pour boiling water in the container.

For best results, cover the container with a plastic wrap or a cling wrap to prevent the steam from escaping the container. This can also help preserve the flavor to an extent. Allow the mushrooms to steep like this for a few minutes, till they begin to appear tender and cooked.

Once the mushrooms look tender enough, strain the water from the container, but preserve it. Since this water contains all the flavor of the mushrooms, it is advised that you save it and use it as mushroom stock in other dishes that might need the flavor.

If you had not powdered the mushrooms before reconstituting them, you can now cut them into small pieces and use them in your recipes they way you wish. However, if you want to use the mushrooms in a drier consistency for dishes like casseroles and quiches, you can simmer the mushrooms over medium heat and keep stirring till the liquid reduces and the mushrooms become thick. The water can be strained and added to the dough, while the thickened mushrooms can be used as fillings.

If you want to use dried mushrooms as a seasoning, place them in a baking container and bake them for about 15 to 20 minutes. When they are baked, put them in a food processor and grind them into a fine powder. Some of the mushrooms that you can use in a dried state are shiitake, porcini, morel, and chanterelle mushrooms.


Submitted on January 16, 2014
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