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Dried Mushrooms, OMG!!

Hi all. I bought some dried Hedgehog and Trumpet Mushrooms the other day, with the idea of using them in a pasta sauce. I placed them in a container of warm water for a couple of hours, got busy making other stuff, made the sauce and totally forgot the dried mushrooms soaking in the water.

Dinner was good but what am I going to do with these soaked dried mushrooms?? I'd use them in soup or stew but it's 95 degrees here and nobody wants soup or stew. Any ideas???

Thanx,
PAT

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    1. Freeze them, liquid included, until you are making a sauce or soup. Then thaw, LIFT them out of the soaking water, and either pour it into a container carefully, leaving the grit behind, or pour it through a coffee filter. That broth has lots of flavor and should be included in soup, stew, sauce, or gravy.

      1. I would saute them in the morning, and put them in an omelette along with some cheese (Swiss probably).

        Speaking of dried mushrooms, I read an interesting recipe recently that called for grinding dried mushrooms into a powder, and mixing it with ground beef when making burgers, for extra meaty flavor.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Atomic76

          I've ground them and added to butter - makes for a really wonderful compound butter.

          1. re: Atomic76

            I've ground them to add to ramen broths. I also ground dried shitakes and added them to bolognese and stews (I can feel the daggers thrown at me by the Hazan-bolognese purists :)). Dried mushrooms add a depth to many dishes.

          2. Thank you all for great ideas. I will freeze these puppies and await a colder day.

            Pat

            4 Replies
            1. re: caiatransplant

              I've never bought either of these dried....I usually only buy wood ear because they hydrate well. This is a question for all (didn't want to start another thread): which dried mushrooms do the best and taste more like fresh? I've had trouble with shitake, for example.

              1. re: rudeboy

                I think rehydrated dried mushrooms taste BETTER than fresh.
                The meaty flavor seems to be more intense, and the soaking water is great as a brothy addition to sauces/soups. (Pour through a coffee filter, or let any grit settle to the bottom and carefully decant into a clean jar.) The dried shiitake mushrooms seem to be the most economical of the options I see in Asian markets, which reliably have better pricing on dried mushrooms than supermarkets and specalty/gourmet stores. I caution against the large jars of assorted dry shrooms sold at Costco. The label says they are packed in North America but not where they were grown. I found that they had an underlying off-flavor that is chemical/bitter/medicinal/metallic.

                1. re: greygarious

                  I'll give it another run and be sure to use the water when possible. Usually use BTB mushroom base for a deep flavor and the salt component (and, of course, hydrolyzed soy) when using fresh cremini mushrooms. But to keep the specific mushroom pure, I'll try some different dried ones and use the water. Thanks for the costco warning! Just looked up and found dried hens of the woods......sorry OP if this is too off-topic.

                  1. re: rudeboy

                    Hi rudeboy. I buy my mushrooms (dry) from Earthy in MI. They're not the cheapest, but they're good. As to taste, I like the porcini. They hydrate pretty well, the soaking liquid is killer in lots of things, but the shrooms are a bit chewy. That said, in the depth of winter in Iowa, chewy shrooms in a beef stew tastes pretty awesome to me.

            2. I'd make mushroom risotto. Serve with salad on the side for a simple summer dinner.

              1 Reply
              1. re: boogiebaby

                My thought went that way, too, only a rice salad for the summer. Green onions sliced in, scrounge the veggie bin for whatever else sounded good, maybe a can of baby clams or some toasted nuts. A light vinaigrette could go whatever direction sounded good at the moment, lemon and garlic, rice vinegar and sesame oil, red pepper flakes, whatever.

              2. Make duxelle and stuff chicken.

                1. Squeeze out the liquid, pan fry in lots of butter until they start to brown, and season with salt. Eat while hot.

                  I do this with small dried shitakes, and it's wonderful.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                    Sure! Squeeze out that liquid but be sure to strain and save it. Use it in soup or gravy. Use it as part of the liquid for a braise. And if it's too hot for any of that now, freeze it. Sooner or later you'll be glad it was available to punch up the flavor of something.

                    It's really got a lot of flavor and, hey!, it's free.