There are over 2000 varieties of wild mushrooms across the world, some domesticated, such as morels, ceps, porcinis, and chanterelles, and some only available in the wild. And while I do not recommend going into your local forests and picking mushrooms (they can be poisonous), leaving it to the professionals and foraging at your local farmers market can produce some unbelievably delicious wild mushroom dishes.
Recipes with wild mushrooms
Pasta with Morel Sauce
Makes 4 to 6 servings
2 cups fresh morel mushrooms or 2 ounces dried
2 to 3 tablespoons of butter
1 tablespoon finely chopped leek
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
Salt to taste
1/2 pound capellini or linguini
1/2 cup cream or half and half
Freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Slice mushrooms into thin slices. If using dried mushrooms, reconstitute them in warm water for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, squeeze mushrooms, saving the liquid, and chop.
2. Sauté mushrooms in butter in a large skillet. After about 1 minute, stir in leeks, parsley and salt. Continue cooking until mushrooms are tender. If mushrooms begin to dry out, add
additional water a little at a time (use mushroom water if you started with dried mushrooms).
3. Meanwhile, cook and drain pasta. Mix cream or half and half into mushroom mixture and cook, stirring occasionally, until it thickens. Mix in cheese to taste. Add more cream or half and half for
desired consistency, if necessary. Combine pasta and cream sauce and top with more cheese, extra parsley and black pepper.
Salmon with Black Trumpets
Makes 2 servings
2 cups black trumpet mushrooms (or morels)
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup prepared horseradish
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 salmon steaks or filets
1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute mushrooms in 1 tablespoon of butter until all liquid is absorbed. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2. Preheat broiler. In a small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, horseradish, parsley and lemon juice.
3. Arrange salmon in a baking dish and top with remaining butter. Place salmon under broiler and cook until the edges are browned. Spread horseradish sauce over salmon and continue broiling 6 to 8
minutes or until desired degree of doneness.
4. Spoon mushrooms over salmon and serve with lemon wedges.
Avocado Chicken and Field Mushroom Salad
Makes 4 servings
4 large open-capped field mushrooms (or portabellos)
1 tablespoon olive oil plus more for brushing
2 chicken beasts, sliced thickly
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 large ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, thinly sliced
12 sliced cherry tomatoes
Juice of half a lemon
A sprig of tarragon, finely chopped
1. Brush mushrooms with olive oil and sprinkle with paprika, salt and pepper. Season chicken with lemon juice, salt, pepper and garlic.
2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil and cook chicken until browned. Mix in onion and cook for another 5 minutes. Pour in chicken stock, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until
liquid is absorbed. Gently mix in remaining ingredients.
3. To serve, place one mushroom cap on each plate and top with the chicken mixture.
Any type of mushrooms can be used in these recipes, but try to use wild mushrooms for their earthy and distinct flavors.
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