The perfect mushroom? Because of its widespread and deeply rooted traditional use in so many parts of the world, the King Bolete, Cep, Penny Bun, Porcini, Porcino, Steinpilz, has become iconic to the epitome of foraging. Oh so exciting to look for, all the more exciting to find. Its versatility in cuisine also add to it a widely loved, if not essential, kitchen ingredient.
From their fresh state, they can be used raw. This is only really enjoyable if the mushrooms are fresh, crisp and exquisite examples. Older specimens should either be dried or they should have their pores removed and they should then be cooked. Depending on how you want to eat them, you can cook them for a short or long time. I love to saute them in oil and salt browning them on all sides.
Dried porcini are one serious hit of umami. Their flavor is rich and deep and they will enrich a range of dishes. I like to use dried and pounded porcini mushrooms instead of stock cubes for gravies, sauces and soups.
Dried slices of porcini
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