We usually have a well-stocked fridge and pantry.
When we’re out of something, that something is likely to be fresh mushrooms.
Fortunately, there’s a solution for that: dried mushrooms.
While nothing beats the flavor and texture of a fresh raw mushroom in a salad, side of marinated mushrooms or sauté, dried mushrooms work very well in certain recipes.
All they need is water to reconstitute into their former selves.
Voilà: You have excellent additions to eggs, gravies, quiche, risotto, soups, sauces and more. (They work less well in a dish where the mushroom is the main focus, like salads and sautés).
To cook with dried mushrooms, first cover them with warm water and soak for 10 minutes. Drain them, change the water, and soak for another 10 to 15 minutes. Then cook per the recipe’s directions.
If you can take advantage of the opportunity, save the soaking water for another purpose—cooking pasta or poaching chicken, for example. You can use it as is or reduce it for a sauce or gravy requiring just a few tablespoons of water.
If you can’t use it this week, stick it in the freezer.