SPOONFUL - Mushroom Lover

It's been a while since my last food related post. My last food related was probably a year ago but fret no more. I finally had time to try something new in my kitchen (At long last!)

Anyway, I made two things; first is a classic recipe that is very versatile and could be used in a lot of ways. The other is a healthy alternative that could also be an appetizer and possibly a favorite.

You might have guessed that I used mushrooms (duh) from the title. I love mushroom! There are different types of mushrooms available in the market. There's shiitake, portobello, black fungus, and a whole lot more. But most of us are only familiar with canned button mushrooms because they are easily available. With today's recipes, what I used are oyster mushrooms. Most households in the Philippines do not use oyster mushrooms but they've been eaten since the first world war.  It is mostly used in Asian dishes; in its own, in soups or in stir fry.

I got my oyster mushrooms from a Simbayanan ni Maria Multi-Purpose Cooperative. It is a community based cooperative in Taguig with integrated social and business entrepreneurship services, one of which is their oyster mushroom farm. The produce, they sell in their community.

For my first recipe, I made an oyster mushroom duxelle:

Oyster mushrooms, chopped
Onions, chopped
Herbs and spices

1. Heat butter in a pan. When hot enough, saute onions and mushrooms
2. Season with your choice of herbs and spices

a traditional mushroom duxelle is composed of a variety of mushrooms. But since I wanted to feature oyster mushrooms, I decided to make a duxelle entirely out of them.

You can see from the photo above that the mushrooms were not chopped into small peices as they should be. I sliced them in strips for two reasons: One, I don't want them to be so small that I could not eat it as is. A duxelle is usually a side dish or a topping in pasta. Two: I ate it with rice. Haha.

For the second recipe I made crispy oyster mushrooms

Oyster mushrooms
Cayenne pepper
Salt and Pepper
Oil for frying

1. In a bowl , beat the eggs
2. In another bowl, mix together flour, cayenne pepper, paprika, and salt and pepper to make the breading
3. Dip each piece of mushroom in the beaten eggs then dredge in the flour mixture
4. Fry dredged oyster mushrooms in hot oil until crispy

Make sure that your oil is hot when frying. The mushrooms tend to release moisture when heat is insufficient. This can lead to a soggy product. I did not slice the mushrooms in smaller pieces as I wanted to fry them in their natural fan shape. Also, I went easy on the salt as mushrooms are already rich in glutamate, a chemical compound that gives the umami taste.

This recipe is perfect as a healthy snack or as an appetizer. Dip it sweet chili sauce or in spiced vinegar.

There are a lot of things you could do with oyster mushrooms, or mushrooms for that matter, aside from what I've shown. Though you just have to be careful to really know what you use as there are some mushrooms that are not edible. Anyway, I encourage you to try it or make variations of your own! 

Looks delicious right? Share your thoughts below or on twitter @iamthebluedevil