How to Cook and Clean Mushrooms
Mushroom season is among us. But if you have never used fresh mushrooms or have forgotten how to clean them, these little “fun-gis” can be a little intimidating. So let’s take a look at how to choose the best mushrooms in the bunch and how to clean and eat them without getting them waterlogged.
Selecting and Storing Mushrooms
To select your mushrooms, start feeling them. The perfect mushroom feels firm and plump and doesn’t have any bruises or moisture on the outside of it. Avoid any mushroom that feels slimy or is spotted. For white mushrooms, also called button mushroom, look for tightly closed “gills” or the area under the cap. To store your mushrooms, make sure they are unwashed and place them in a paper bag in the refrigerator. They can be stored in the paper bag for up to two days. For morel mushrooms, it is a little different. Once you clean your morels, place them in a bowl and put them in the refrigerator for up to three days, keeping the towel damp.
Cleaning Your Mushrooms
Cleaning your mushrooms is a fairly simple process. This process can be used on all types of mushrooms except morels. For regular mushrooms, you’ll need a damp paper towel or wash cloth. One at a time, wipe down each mushroom to remove the first. You can rinse them lightly in cool water and pat them dry but you should not soak them. Mushrooms absorb water quickly and won’t brown if they are waterlogged.
Cleaning Your Morel Mushrooms
It is important to clean your morels after purchasing them. To do this, you’ll need to start by cutting a thin slice off the bottom of the stem and rinsing them in cool water to remove dirt or insects. If your morels still look dirty, soak them in lightly salted water to remove any remaining insects or dirt. Rinse them well, pat dry, and wrap them in a damp paper towel or clean damp cloth.
There are more than 10,000 mushrooms found around North America and thousands more found in other parts of the world. So, what’s your favorite fungi?
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Hearn Kirkwood is a privately held Food Service Distributor specializing in produce, meat, poultry, dairy, and fresh seafood. We purchase 90% of our fresh produce direct from California, Florida, Texas, etc. with the balance supplied by local markets. We are located within one mile of Route 295 and I95 providing us with easy access to Baltimore, Washington, and Virginia.