I live in Southeast Texas where bright red chanterelle mushrooms grow prolifically in the early summers after a good rain. The downside to picking mushrooms just after a heavy rain is extra moisture they can hold. Mushrooms are like sponges, and extra liquid can make them soggy or rubbery. I’ve learned that proper cleaning and drying followed by roasting in a hot oven can turn any fungi into crispy umami goodness. This method works for any type of mushroom, from baby portabellas to chanterelles.
Serve these as a simple side dish to fish, poultry, or red meat; with grits and eggs for breakfast; or on top of toasted sourdough with a swipe of your favorite soft cheese.
- 1 lb. wild or cultivated mushrooms
- Neural flavored oil, such as avocado or grapeseed
- 1 or 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary or thyme (optional)
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground pepper
Also works with
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- If using cultivated mushrooms, brush them clean with a slightly damp paper towel. If you washed or soaked wild mushrooms with water, thoroughly pat them dry and lay them across a towel to air dry for a couple hours before cooking. It’s even better if you can do this a day in advance and store them in a brown paper bag in the refrigerator. The dryer they are, the crispier they will get.
- Tear or chop the mushrooms into even-sized pieces for even cooking.
- Spread the mushrooms across 2 metal baking sheets. Don’t overcrowd the tray and make sure to leave a little space in between the mushrooms so moisture can evaporate. Drizzle enough oil across the mushrooms to coat, but don’t drown them. Tear the rosemary leaves into small pieces and disperse them across the mushrooms.
- Roast in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, flipping halfway through. The edges should be crispy and golden in color. Season with salt and pepper just before serving.
Note: To add flavor variation, you can season with a blend of spices (my favorite is MeatEater’s Gnome On The Range Umami Mushroom Rub), add a splash of soy sauce or red wine vinegar, or stir in minced garlic when the mushrooms are halfway cooked.