Kitchen Tips and Tricks -Part 1
how to select, wash, and store mushrooms
HOW TO WASH MUSHROOMS
Do you submerge your mushrooms in water or spray them off with water? If the answer is yes, I’m here to save you! You see mushrooms are like sponges- their porous nature means they absorb water. To get those perfectly browned sautéed mushrooms, we need to avoid adding water to them in the first place! Also definitely definitely do not use any chemicals to clean your mushrooms. They will absorb that too and we don’t want that. So how should we clean these things? It’s so easy you’re going to laugh, read on!
All you need is a damp paper towel or kitchen rag. Take each mushroom and wipe clean. That’s it! Make sure to only wash mushrooms right before you use them as washing in advance will encourage spoilage and cause the mushrooms to become slimy.
HOW TO SELECT MUSHROOMS
If possible, it is best to buy organic mushrooms to better ensure that the soil these fungi grew in was not full of toxins. It is often best to select packaged mushrooms versus loose as they are usually vacuum sealed. Loose mushrooms will stay fresh for up to five days whereas prepackaged will last 7-10 days before the package is opened. It is also best to buy whole mushrooms and chop them yourself because chopped mushrooms are pretty difficult to clean one and two they retain nutrients and flavor longer whole. Never buy mushrooms that are slimy. Look for plump and clean looking mushrooms.
HOW TO STORE MUSHROOMS
Since crimini mushrooms are most common, we will focus on this type. Crimini mushrooms will stay fresh for up to five days if stored correctly. Mushrooms need room to breath. Therefore it is best to avoid plastic bags and instead store them in paper bags in the refrigerator. Like I said above, do not wash ahead of time.
Research suggests that crimini mushrooms may protect DNA from oxidative damage and therefore cancer. They may especially help prevent breast cancer by preventing circulating levels of the form of estrogen that promotes this cancer. They are packed with antioxidant minerals such as iron, zinc, manganese, magnesium, potassium, and selenium. Selenium is great for thyroid support as well as binding to toxins like mercury. Crimini mushrooms are also a great source of b vitamins which are necessary for the metabolism of carbohydrates, protein, and lipids. These means they help the body make and use energy! Crimini mushrooms are dense with the amino acid tryptophan which is necessary for healthy sleep. Lastly they are a great source of fiber and 5oz of raw crimini mushrooms only contain 31 calories making them a great food for healthy weight control/loss. You might want to add some more mushrooms into your life! Check out this easy recipe below!
MUSHROOM STOCK FOR UMAMI FLAVOR
- 1c mushroom stems
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp whole coriander
- 1 tsp whole thyme leaves (optional)
- parsley stems (optional)
- 1/2 tsp whole black pepper
- 1/2c onion peels/scraps
- 6 c filtered water
Bring all ingredients to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Let simmer for about an hour or so. Keep an eye on it. Taste and if it seems infused enough strain and add salt to taste. Use as you desire!
Some ideas might be to make risotto, to cook rice and other grains, for sauces, soup, stews, or braised recipes.
I hope you found this post helpful and practical! Healthy wishes!