Dehydrating wild mushrooms, anyone do it?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by r.h. in okla., Nov 27, 2004.

  1. Today I brought home two 1-gallon size bags full of oyster mushrooms. I thought I might eat one bag tonight and thought about trying my luck at dehydrating the other bag. So I'm wondering if I dry them out will they crumble to peices or will they stay intact and be able to store?
     
  2. BobK

    BobK Well-Known Member

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    My wife put some wild mushrooms in the dryer this morning. First experiment so I could let you know tomorrow how they turn out.

    Bob
     

  3. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    I haven't tried drying and storing mushrooms, but I suggest you check where I inquired about drying and storing mushrooms on the 'Crafts and Cooking' forum a while back. There was some excellent feedback on this subject:

    http://homesteadingtoday.com/showthread.php?t=63315

    Also, a friend in Europe emailed me that they pickle Oyster mushrooms.
    Mushrooms like boletes they put tie a toothpic at one end of a string and pull the strings through the caps and dry that way. I'm not sure if that method works as well for chantrelles (Oyster mushrooms that have gills).

    good luck.
     
  4. Bruce in NE

    Bruce in NE Well-Known Member

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    I've dried lots of morel mushrooms in a regular drier and they come out fine. You can just store them in quart jars or in the freezer for a long time if dry enough. Don't know about the other mushroom types.
     
  5. Thanks moonwolf and everyone else. I think I am convinced enough to give it a try. So tommorrow I will soak the remaining bag in salt water and then pat dry them and then place them on my dehydrator. Maybe by the time I get back from church they will be dry enough to store. Well happy mushroom hunting everyone!
     
  6. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    Don't soak or salt the mushrooms, it will draw out way too much flavor. If they are dirty give them a brushing with a fingernail brush. After they are dried they need to be stored airtight as they are moisture sponges.
    I pick meadow mushrooms from my cow pasture each spring and fall and make mushroom powder from those we don't eat fresh.
    I slice the shrooms and dry them until brittle. I then powder them in the food processor. I then toast in a dry frying pan about 1/3 as much onion flakes and 1/6 garlic flakes. Cool and then grind these with the mushrooms. Add some mace, nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste. This is tricky as it relies on experience and personal preferance.
    I use the powder to enhance soups, gravies, meatloaves, meatballs, steaks, roasts, etc, etc.
     
  7. healing herbals

    healing herbals Pam in OK

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    RH,
    you really need to join us on the oklahoma forage group.....we talk about this and so many other things, but it is not a chatty list, only foraging

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/okforageahead/

    Pam
     
  8. diane greene

    diane greene Well-Known Member

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    Drying is fine, but for the best taste- saute the mushrooms in a little butter and freeze portion sizes in little freezer bags.
     
  9. Thanks healing herbals, it looks like a interesting group to join. I'll have to dig around on Yahoo and see if I still own a username and password before I can join. But the site looks like an excellent education tool.

    Diane thanks for the info. I know frozen foods do taste a little better but I'm trying to wean myself away from having to depend so much on electricity and propane. I hope one day to do away with my chest freezer and only use the top freezer of my refrigerator. I want to be able to use smoke houses and root cellars like my grandparents did.

    Thanks Cristiaan, unfortunatly I read your post too late. However that little recipe sounds very interesting. I'll have to write it down and give it a try.
     
  10. Jasen

    Jasen Member

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    A couple years back we had a big pile of sugar maple that we cut into rounds to later split for firewood. When we went out to finally split it, they were all growing the most wonderful oyster mushrooms I have ever seen. We ate all we could for a week and dried pounds of it in the oven over low heat and cut into less than 1/2 inch thick strips. Then we stored them in the freezer. Saves huge amounts of space and tasted wonderful in soups or rehydrated in warm water and fried. The flavor is stronger than fresh. Good find!
     
  11. WanderingOak

    WanderingOak Well-Known Member

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    I've dried wild mushrooms on racks over a woodstove before. It took about two days, although it might be quicker in an electric dehydrator. I once found a 'chicken mushroom' that weighed almost three pounds! I was able to get a year's worth of soups our of that one mushroom.
     
  12. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I dehydrate mushrooms every time they go on sale!

    Oyster mushrooms dehydrate well. They can hold their shape if you handle them carefully, but I just prefer to crumble them up into whatever I'm cooking. I've done this with button, shiitake, and oyster 'shrooms.
     
  13. Well I successfully dehydrated the last bag of mushrooms. The gallon size bag was packed as full as it could get but after dehydrating it was only about 1/3 the amount. Purty neat, I was almost tempted to rehydrate and eat them when I uncovered them from the dehydrator. I can hardly wait to try them in soup or something. The only way I have ever eaten wild mushrooms is by rolling them in flour and frying. I would like to try other ways.