|Dried Mushrooms Are Easy To Do|
The Recipe Redux theme this month is to think dehydrated favorites using a food dehydrator, a low, slow oven, or natural sunshine to preserve natural healthfulness. I decided to try dehydrating mushrooms. I have purchased dried mushrooms in a package before, like porcini and wood ear, but had never dried drying my own before this month’s challenge.
I started with a bunch of white button mushrooms. Of course, you can use any type of mushroom.
You start by cleaning them. I used a dry paper towel and rubbed them gently to remove any visible dirt. Several sources suggest that one not use water to clean them as this adds too much moisture to the mushrooms and they will take longer to dry.
I then used a slicer to cut the mushrooms into uniform slices. This slicer can be used for cooked eggs and strawberries, as well as mushrooms. It creates uniform slices. You can also use a sharp knife or a mandolin.
Place the sliced mushrooms in a single layer on a dry baking sheet. Do not spray with cooking spray or coat with oil. I also decided to experiment and seasoned half of the slice mushrooms with dried thyme. You can use any of your favorite spices. Curry, lemon pepper, or basil are other ideas.
Bake in a 150 to 170 degree oven for one hour. The lowest temperature my oven goes is 170 degrees. Several sources I read said 150 degrees. After one hour, turn the slices over. Place back in oven and cook for another hour. Check the mushrooms. They should be dry and brittle and crack when you bend them. If not this dry, put back in oven and cook for another hour.
Let the dry, cooked mushrooms cool completely on a rack.
Once dry, place in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Store in a dark, cool place.
Dried mushrooms can be rehydrated in boiling water or soup. Use them in pasta dishes, stews, soups, omelets, or a variety of dishes.