Tuesday, 19 June 2012

The Morel of the story is...

The humble take-out pizza box sat empty after a late night working dinner-something must be done.

It is time to give serious consideration to opening up your wallet and indulging in a few ounces of this delightful fungus.

Many of us are a slave to the white button mushroom and even go the length to wash the life out of it.  But what of the other earthly delights on your grocer's shelf?  (And what of the alternatives to your supermarket shelf?)

The morel was a key component in last weekend's dinner.  A sublime creation.
Tarragon crusted scallops, borscht, chicken with brandied morel sauce, finishing with a smooth chocolate pot.

More about the tarragon and chocolate pot later.

The morel can run $15/oz.  One has the choice of dried or fresh. Most reputable farmers markets will carry good sized, fresh product.  Dried mushrooms are perfectly respectable contrary to opinion.  This is not a "pot noodle" but a concentration of flavour.  Soaked dried morels for twenty minutes to half an hour.

Saute butter, garlic, sliced mushroom; add full cream; soy sauce, and brandy-if inclined.  Simmer 'til thickened.

The morel texture is not compromised even after a saute and simmer. Adds a earthiness to any sauce or stew.  Try it in barley risotto.  Yes- try thinking outside the box -substitute the arborio for barley.

Worth every penny-skip the mass market take out coffee for a couple of days.  You won't miss a thing.
Do your research, throw on your apron and experiment. 
The button mushroom is not going away; it will forgive you.