Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Oyster Mushroom Sauce

Yesterday, while at the Food Service Expo, I happened by the Ponderosa Mushrooms exhibit and talked with the really nice lady manning the booth. There were packages of organic oyster mushrooms free for the taking, so I took one. I hadn't tried this particular mushroom before, and they were described to me as delicate, meaty, and earthy, and they shouldn't be overcooked. I made a nice stirfry with them last night, and tonight made the following recipe.

  • 2 slices bacon (ok, I have some readers who don't eat pork; don't worry - you can substitute turkey bacon or, even better, if you can get a hunk of smoked chicken or duck, just don't saute for very long)
  • 1/4 onion, diced
  • a little wine or stock for deglazing
  • about 1/2 a cup of cream
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp REAL Parmesan cheese (again - spend the money, get a grater, and buy the real stuff - there's no comparison!)
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups oyster mushrooms

So fry up your bacon until desired crispness. Remove to paper towels to drain and drain most but not all of the fat from the pan; cut into small pieces. Saute your onions until tender. Deglaze the pan with whatever liquid you choose and then let the liquid reduce to a shadow of its former self. Add the oyster mushrooms and gently saute for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently. Season with pepper. Add the cream, garlic, bacon and cheese. Heat through thoroughly. Serve over pasta.


1. Oyster mushrooms have long stems - do not remove these!

2. Do not overcook the mushrooms. They are delicate and shouldn't be browned or cooked as you would your regular button mushroom. You basically just want to heat them through.

3. The mushrooms are chewier than your button mushroom - this is normal and the way they should be.

4. These mushrooms are more delicately but distinctly flavoured than button mushrooms. Don't overpower your sauce with tons of cheese or meat or garlic; you want a nice balance and you want to be able to taste the flavour of those mushrooms.

5. If you want to use oyster mushrooms in other dishes, add them near the end to avoid overcooking.

Enjoy and let me know what you think.

1 comment:

greatwhitebear said...

Leave out the cream. add a bit of butter, a splash of Lambrusco, and a bit of cornstarch or arrowroot, and you have a great mushroom sauce for serving over cajun style steak!


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