April 19, 2012

Morel Mushrooms

This weekend may be your last weekend to get out and go mushroom hunting. If you've never gone out looking for morel mushrooms, you will probably have to find someone to help you know where to hunt. Most people in my area guard the secret locations of their hunting grounds better than they do their computer passwords.

We recently had a big bag of smaller mushrooms to cook, and I have taken the best ideas from every recipe I can find to figure out the tastiest way to cook morels.

First, you have to get them clean and get out the bugs. Gross, but true. I soak mine in a big bowl of water with sea salt for several hours, then carefully rinse and pat them dry.

After you've gotten them all clean, you can slice them in half lengthwise.  I have done them in quarters if they are really big mushrooms. 

I then make two bowls for breading.  First, break some eggs and whisk them up well.  In the second bowl, I like to use finely mashed crackers.  Because the mushrooms have been soaked in salt water and the crackers are pre-salted, I usually leave salt out of the seasoning.  I like to use just a tiny pinch of nutmeg and some freshly cracked black pepper mixed with the cracker crumbs.

I heat some butter and olive oil in a skillet together.  This cuts down on smoking, but also gives you the best of both flavors. 

Dump your breaded mushrooms into the pan and saute for about 10 minutes or until they are nicely browned.


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