Sunday, August 24, 2008

More Mushrooms

Chanterelles (meaning "crater") are one of the best of the mushrooms. They are better wild and rarely cultivated. In German speaking countries, they are called eirschwammerl (egg mushrooms) due to their wonderful color that of an exceptionally good egg yolk. The "crater" comes from their shape. they rise individually from the ground without forming a true stem. They broaden into a funnel shape that is concave at the top. They do not have true gills. Instead their exteriors are ridged unevenly, joining and dividing.
They are best sauteed whole if small or cut into half-inch pieces with butter or olive oil along with some finely minced shallot and tarragon. They are a perfect accompaniment to their namesake eggs, scrambled softly. Or serve them with roast chicken or sauteed veal.
Do not put them with strong-tasting foods. They deserve to shine on their own.

They have a close relative called trompette du morte due to their black color. They are thinner fleshed than the regular Chanterelles; but their color makes them sensational with the white meat of chicken or in a quiche.

Lion"s mane mushrooms (pom pom, hericium americanum) used to be classified as one of the Hydnums due to their exuberant growth of soft tufts. that has changed but not the mushrooms. I'm still working on a perfect recipe as I am for Giant Pleurotus that are rather phallic looking. Keep checking. I have some in the refrigerator. In the meantime, cut the giant Pleurotus on the diagonal into quarter-inch thick slices and saute in a shallow amount of olive oil in a single layer until lightly browned on each side. You will need a knife and fork.

I bought the last two at the Garrison, new Yor, Saturday farmers' market. They come from Madura Farms in Goshen, New York (845 342 0654).


Anonymous said...

There's no "e" in the French for death -- though it is feminine. So "trompette de la mort" -- and quoting Wikipedia:

Parfois nommée *corne d'abondance*, mais plus souvent *trompette des
morts* ou *trompette de la mort*, la *craterelle* est — malgré ces
noms sinistres dus à sa forme et à sa couleur de deuil — un champignon
comestible des plus appréciés que l'on
cueille dans les forêts européennes. Son nom scientifique est
/*Craterellus cornucopioides*/, /crater/ signifiant /vase/ en latin.

Just to show I'm paying attention

Barbara said...

How wonderful to have erudite friends to correct my errors. I should, however, point out that these mushrooms can be picked--I have--in America. typically French to ignore this.