If ever you’re stuck with a batch of mushrooms getting spotted, it’s time to cook them before you lose ’em.
I love mushrooms so I buy them by the case [5 pounds].
Contrary to popular belief, mushrooms do not absorb water; so quickly brush each mushroom under running water with a medium-stiff mushroom brush. The brush should not be too soft or so stiff it scores the surface skin.
Slice them up thinly, or in halves, then place them in a bowl with salt, pepper and butter, then nuke them on high for a few minutes. Stir them midway to coat them well.
Now you have mushroom water. And cooked mushrooms. Separate them into two bowls. You can use them any way you’d like.
Here’s what I do…
Mash your potatoes with the mushroom water, add a little more butter, salt and pepper with as much milk as you need to make them smooth. Once the potatoes are smooth, stir in and incorporate and mushroom pieces. You can eat it like this and it’s wonderful. Or you can spoon it into ramekins with a little shredded cheese of your choice on top. Put them in the oven in a bain-marie (water pan) to prevent them from drying up. Or you can fry up flattened spoonfuls of mashed potatoes in oil in a pan on the stove top; but you’d want to incorporate the cheese (Romano or Parmesan) into the mashed potatoes first. Of course, cheese isn’t necessary to make this a fabulous side dish. A roasted garlic clove is equally wonderful!
Note: If you’re just using a sprinkle of cheese on top, add it near the end of the cooking and make it old cheddar for the best result. But any cheese you have will do.
Once you’re used to making this, you’ll find that you can easily incorporate other things to make it more colorful and happy. Example? Paper thin slivers of red onion, or slivers of red Cubanel or Jalepeno peppers, or just put the mushroom pieces on top. The decorating is the most fun!