Beginning in mid-April, when all the snow has completely melted, the first mushrooms – morels – appear in the forest. They have an unusual appearance and a peculiar taste that make many gourmets value them even higher than white mushrooms.
Morels are one of the most popular types of mushrooms, which can be found in the forest or bought at the market. These mushrooms have a unique flavor and aroma, so they are often used in the preparation of various dishes. In this article, we will look at several ways to cook morels and give some recipes for dishes. Cooking morels mushrooms is an art that requires attention to detail and adherence to certain principles in order to have a true flavor experience.
Here are some principles and tricks to help you prepare delicious and flavorful morels mushrooms:
Picking morels mushrooms
Before you can cook morels mushrooms, they need to be harvested. You can find morels mushrooms in the fall, when it is their season. They grow on the edges of the forest, in bushes and in forest glades. Before picking mushrooms, you should make sure that they really are morels mushrooms, as some other types of mushrooms can be poisonous. Or they can simply be found on the shelves at the store.
Choosing the right mushrooms
Mushrooms are a very tasty and special ingredient, but at the same time can be dangerous to human health if you use a poor quality or not fresh product. Therefore, you need to choose only fresh, strong and without damage morels mushrooms. Be sure to check them for worms or rottenness.
Before you start cooking morels, you need to know how to prepare them properly. First you need to clean the mushrooms of dirt and leaves, using a brush or a soft cloth. Then, the morels should be cut into pieces or sliced. If the mushrooms are very large, you can cut them into smaller pieces. It is important to remember that the morels are not recommended to soak in water, as they can absorb it and lose their flavor.
You can cook morels mushrooms using different methods, depending on what dish you want to use them in or prepare them as a separate appetizer.
1 Method: Roasting morels
One of the easiest and fastest ways to cook morels is to roast them. To do this, you need to heat a frying pan with oil and place the sliced morels on it. Fry the mushrooms over medium heat until they are soft and beginning to brown. While frying you can add some salt, pepper and other spices such as garlic, thyme, basil, pepper. Аnd salt as well as sour cream, cream or soy sauce depending on your taste.
2 Method: Boiling morels
Slice the mushrooms into pieces. Put the mushrooms in a pot and fill with water. The water should cover the mushrooms by about 2-3 cm. Add salt to taste and a bay leaf if you like. The bay leaf will give the mushrooms a special flavor. Put the pot on the fire and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the mushrooms for 15-20 minutes. If the mushrooms are large, the cooking time can increase to 30 minutes. Check the readiness of mushrooms, they should be soft, but not fall apart. After cooking, remove the morels in a colander and allow the excess moisture to drain.
Ready morels mushrooms can be used in soups, stews, on pizza and other dishes. Boiled mushrooms can also be frozen and used in the future.
3 Method: Baking the morels
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Transfer the sliced mushrooms to a large bowl. Add the crushed garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Mix thoroughly so that the mushrooms are coated with the oil and seasonings. Arrange the mushrooms in a single layer on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Place the tray with the mushrooms in the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are golden and soft and juicy. After baking, garnish the dish with fresh parsley or other herbs to your liking. Serve the morel mushrooms hot as a side dish or as a separate dish.
Baked morel mushrooms go well with meat, fish and vegetables.
4 Method: Marinating the mushrooms
The morel mushrooms should be cut into large pieces and pour a marinade of vinegar, water, sugar, salt, spices and bay leaf. Then you need to leave the mushrooms for a few hours in the refrigerator to soak up the marinade. Pickled mushrooms can be used as an appetizer or added to salads.
5 Method: Drying
Drying morel mushrooms is another cooking option. The morels mushrooms should be cut into thin slices and dried in the sun or in the oven at 50-60 degrees. Dried morels mushrooms can be stored in glass jars or bags for long-term use in various dishes.
The preliminary preparations are complete, it’s time to move on to dishes with morels. I will tell you one of the many options where you can use mushrooms.
Morels Roasted with Potatoes
Forest mushrooms roasted with potatoes is probably the easiest recipe with mushrooms. The favorite root vegetable turns out delicious with a variety of species, and morels are no exception here.
- morels – 400 g
- potatoes – 500 g
- onions – 1 pc
- vegetable oil – 60 ml
- salt – to taste
- black pepper – to taste
- herbs – for serving
Method of preparation:
- Take previously prepared boiled mushrooms.
- Cut the mushrooms into several pieces or leave them intact if they are small.
- Peel and slice the potatoes into thin slices. Pat them dry with a paper towel.
- Peel the onion and cut into half rings. Pour vegetable oil in a heated frying pan and sauté the onions. Saute until golden.
- Place sliced potatoes. Saute without a lid over a medium heat for 5 minutes, then stir-fry.
- Add the morels to the pan, salt and pepper.
- Cover and roast for about 10-15 minutes until the potatoes are tender.
Serve the morels with the potatoes, sprinkled with chopped herbs.
We hope that our article will help you better understand how to cook morels, and inspire you to create new and original dishes.