Monday, 8 April 2013

Top 10 most tasty / delicious mushrooms

There are a wide range of mushrooms that can be found in the forest or even at your local supermarket. In this article we will run through the top 10 focusing on way you can get hold of them, what they taste like what recipes work best:

  1. Chicken of the woods - this little baby is extremely tasty and is renowned for tasting like chicken, I have had bad experiences finding them in the woods so make sure that you wash it and thoroughly cook it before eating. Unfortunately it's very tough to get these from supermarkets you really have to forage them although there are some meat substitutes (like Quorn) made from similar mushroom species which taste similar.
  2. Truffles - these little bad boys live underground, almost like a potato it is difficult to spot with the naked human eye. Often a dog or a pig is needed to smell them out and then you need to dig them out of the ground before the animal munches them up. Once you find one of these delectable little tasty balls, all you need is a very small piece to make pasta taste delicious. If you cannot find one foraying in the forest you can buy them from upmarket delicatessens, although they are notoriously pricey because they are difficult to cultivate. This makes them a true delicacy which some have called the king of all fungi. The Associate Press reported that a real estate investor and his wife from Hong Kong have paid $160,406 for a gigantic Italian White Alba truffle which is reportedly the world’s most expensive ever. The most expensive truffle weighs in 1.51 kilograms (3.3 lbs).
  3. Portobello mushroom - has a taste and texture very similar to meat, it contains a lot of umame and has an intense almost smokey flavor. The favorite uses for Portobello mushrooms are to slice and grill, roast or broil them. Portobello mushrooms are often used as main dish, replacing meat.
  4. White Button mushroom  - like most mushrooms has an earthy, nutty taste and a light and tender texture when cooked. White Button mushrooms are extremely common and you can often find them in your local supermarkets of generously spread on pizzas and pasta dishes. Other favorite uses for this mushroom is to stuff and bake them, or slice raw on salads.
  5. The Shitake mushroom has an earthy, woodsy, slightly smoky flavor and meaty texture. The favorite uses for Shitake mushrooms are in soups, pasta dishes or added to stir fry. Shitake mushrooms pair up well with any pork or chicken dish.
  6. Enoki mushrooms are white and look similar to a cluster of bean sprouts. Enoki mushrooms have a sweet grape-like flavor and crunchy texture. A favorite when used on salads and sandwiches for a crunchy taste of sweetness.
  7. Grey, blue and brown Oyster mushrooms have a delicate oyster-like flavor with a velvety smooth, meaty texture. Favorite uses for the Oyster mushroom are to roast or sauté them in olive oil with garlic and your favorite fresh herbs they can also be chopped up finely and added to soups to give them a more Asian flavour.
  8. Morels are elegant and delicate in mushroom flavor. I think people often prepare them in ways that destroy their flavor. One of the better recipes we have used which emphasises their flavour is to roll morels in egg wash then in cracker meal made from saltine cracked and shallow fry them....or stew them like a carbonarra sauce and add bourbon and sweet young potatoes. "Where a porcini is like heavy metal...morels are more like jazz."
  9. Porcini have a strong nutty flavor, this is an incredibly popular gourmet mushroom and is often dried as the flavour lasts. You can rehydrate them from dried however, the are so much more meaty and succulent from fresh.
  10. Chantrelles have a pleasantly aromatic fleshy wild mushroom shines like an exotic golden bouquet when seen from a distance against the drab autumn forest background. 

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