Mushrooms, the queens of autumn


We have been making autumn recipes for a few days in our Autumn Kitchen special and I think it is very necessary to make a post about the great queens of the season, mushrooms.

Today I have eaten a recipe, again made with mushrooms, and my wife, who does not like them but does not give any specific reason, told me how I could eat mushrooms. Mushrooms are very similar in composition to vegetables: nine parts of water, and a similar content of protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and fiber than vegetables. But they also have that texture, but above all the flavor that makes them great.

Types and varieties of mushrooms

Mushrooms, although they are the queens of autumn, are not only of this season. There are mainly mushrooms from autumn to spring, although of course it is in autumn when we have more different types and varieties of mushrooms.

In spring some of the mushrooms that we can find are morels, St. George's mushrooms, bonnet, cat's ear, vespa, etc. In autumn there are so many that saying one of them is complicated for fear of leaving the most important ones. But for example, chanterelles, boletus edulis (and other types of boletus), green cap, coprinus, amanitas (of many types, including some very toxic varieties), thistle mushrooms, rusula, etc.

That now we can enjoy more types of mushrooms in all senses so we must do it with caution since there are a large number of mushrooms that are toxic at different levels. From minor gastrointestinal complaints to very poisonous and dangerous.

Precautions for picking mushrooms

That is why you have to be extremely careful and follow some tips to collect mushrooms in the bush. Surely the first is not to do anything that you are not sure you know how to do. You have to go to the mountains with great respect for nature and those who like to pick mushrooms know it.

Although if you are not an expert you can also collect mushrooms. The first thing is to leave very early, especially if you go to areas that are very frequented by other people. You have to pick the mushrooms with care and knowing how to do it, since we can favor that there are more mushrooms in the following season or if we do it badly, there are no mushrooms left. They are not plucked lightly and some mushrooms have to be picked in a special way.

The main thing is to go with someone who knows the terrain and what is done. That way you will not have food scares. But there are also mycological associations that advise on which mushrooms have been collected and thus avoid scares.

Preparation of mushrooms in the kitchen

It is recommended, mainly to prepare the mushrooms before cooking, not to soak them as they can spoil. Mainly wild mushrooms. In that case, it is best to cut the foot that has dirt and the rest to clean them with a thick hair brush.

The recipes can be very varied, from soups or creams, to preparing them directly on the grill, in stews, boiled, battered, in fillings, with pasta, etc. Although of all the above, surely the most repeated is to eat them on the grill. Mushrooms are very grateful in this way, with a little parsley, garlic, thyme and black pepper. (One day I will).

Some recipes published En Directo al Paladar:

  • Spring rice with morels. Recipe
  • Fusilli with mushrooms. Recipe
  • Mushroom and garlic pizza. Recipe
  • How to make mushroom sauce

Conservation of mushrooms

Once cooked, the mushrooms can be preserved directly by placing them in the freezer.To do it in a neutral way, they can be cooked directly, and frozen well stored. They can also be frozen fresh, although they tend to spoil a bit (the color).

They can also be dried, especially the most potent aroma mushrooms, and then pulverized and used as a condiment. Or simply to rehydrate them, although they will never be the same as fresh ones.

You can also canned mushrooms. This would be by confitting them in oil at a low temperature and then, with the jar closed and full of mushrooms in oil, cook it in a water bath to sterilize it.

Photo | Juanedc | jlmaral | Cayetano
Directly to the Palate | Autumn Special Direct to the Palate

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