The Ardent Epicure

An Ode to the Pleasures of Food

12:31 AM

What's on the side? Moonlight Maitake Mushrooms

Posted by Magic of Spice

Honey Butter & Champagne Poached
 Maitake Mushrooms

I scored these pretty babies at a local heath food store near me. I have purchased
these before but they were a more blond in color, these pretty babies however scream
 amber and are a bit smoother in texture. If you would like to take a peak at the lighter
version you can see them here on a Whole Foods shopping trip.  This time an Orange
County exclusive shopping venture at Mothers Market . You can prepare this however
with any type of mushroom you choose including dried wild mushrooms, and I will
include the variances in preparation for you :)

These organic beauties grow in clusters and this is what inspired the recipe that follows.
Maitake is the Japanese name which means "dancing mushroom" and are also known
as "hen of the woods" in English speaking countries. The maitake are prised as a
medicinal aid to boost the immune system as well as other health purposes. Aside from
the numerous dietary pluses, they have the most incredible aroma and as you will see
at the end of this post, hold a full bodied firm texture even after being poached. I find
 the flavor to be quite unique amongst the mushroom varieties, although earthy they
have a subtle balance of underlying tones.

I will list here ingredient amounts per ounce of mushroom. As an example the
 mushroom clusters I used were about 3.5 ounces each and I served 1 cluster per
serving. If you will be using dried mushrooms consider weigh after reconstitution. If
 using a larger variety such as king oyster or portabella cut into 1/4 inch thick slices or
 thinner. Then you  can sauté the mushrooms in your honey butter directly for about
2 minutes each side. Still reserving half of your honey butter for final touches.

What you will need:
3~ 3.5 ounce maitake cluster mushrooms
8 tablespoons butter, halved
2 tablespoons avocado honey,or honey of choice
9 ounces champagne or dry sparkling wine
1 small lemon, sliced
Drizzle of avocado oil, or oil of choice
Pinch of herbs de provence
Pinch black pepper, finely ground
Tongs and sauté pan with lid
*Note: Use a deep enough pan that can be covered with
 mushroom clusters standing upright.

Let's get cooking:
To begin take half of your butter and melt over low heat, add honey until
incorporated. Now halve this mixture setting one half aside. Set your
maitake mushrooms in a bowl, taking one half of your butter/honey drizzle and
over your clusters.Taking your sauté pan place your mushroom clusters along
with lemon slices, herbs de province and a bit of pepper. Now add your
champagne and bring to a low boil, add avocado oil and remaining butter.
Cover and simmer for 6-8 minutes, then carefully turn each cluster with
tongs. Replace lid and simmer an addition 6 minutes or so. Remove
lid and turn your clusters flower facing up, continue to simmer until most
of your liquid is reduced. Place in individual serving vessels and drizzle
with remaining honey butter

Each cluster or equivalent of 3 to 4 ounces of mushrooms
per serving. Above recipe serves 3...I served these in oval shaped
ramekins but any small vessel that you choose will work. However
for presentation purposes a cup or ramekin would work best...

Now before closing I want to mention a treat I received in a giveaway
held by Toni over at  Boulder Locavore. Toni also included a special treat.
Along with this wonderful book, Toni added some organic beans from some
of her favorite Colorado farms. I added a few in the above photo :) And
if you have been reading us here for even a short while you probably know
just how much we love fresh organic beans. So I guess we will be cooking
something special up in the near future to thank our lovely Toni once again :)

Alisha~Magic of Spice

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