Dried. Mushrooms

While grocery shopping there are certain foods I pick up knowing I will use it in the next several days. If I do, then it is all fine and dandy. But sometimes, life happens and I don’t make the dish I was planning on. Most produce will carry my over for a week or more, but mushrooms don’t. They really need to be used within a few days or they are garbage fodder. Or, occasionally, I might see a really good sale on them. I am not a fan of freezing mushrooms beause I think they become chewy. That is why I learned to dry them.

Drying mushrooms is one of the easiest foods to put up for long term storage. You can use the same process no matter what type of mushroom you want to dry. After washing, cut the mushrooms into large chunks. Slices will become too small. I cut these mushrooms into quarters. You can have the pieces as large as you want, it will just take longer to fully dry. Place a cooling rack onto a cookie sheet and spread the mushrooms on top. You can see how little space one 8 ounce package of mushrooms takes up. If you want to fill the pan it will take a couple pounds worth.

Button mushrooms ready to dry and it only takes a couple minutes of prep.
Button mushrooms ready to dry and it only takes a couple minutes of prep.

Place the cookie sheet into a 175 degree oven. Mine only goes down to 200 so I prop the door slight ajar with a small pan.

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Two hours later I have fully dried mushrooms. To store I just put into a canning jar and in the pantry. I use them in dishes that allow them to rehydrate such as soups or Salisbury Steak.

Waiting to cool down enough to store.
Waiting to cool down enough to store.

The awesome part is that to buy dried mushrooms is horribly expensive but now you can build up your own supply for a fraction of the cost. These are great to have on hand when you don’t have any that are fresh. But, they are even better to pack when going camping and making meals in a jar. If you would prefer to rehydrate before adding to a dish, simply soak in water, broth or your favorite wine.

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