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Old 01-21-2008, 10:52 AM   #11
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What's wrong with using fresh mushrooms? They will taste a litle bit diferent but will be fine.

Also I wouldn't eat oat meal for a life of me. Well, maybe for life if that was the only available thing to eat. I hate oat meal and alike.
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Old 01-21-2008, 12:51 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodman View Post
All of the dried shitake that I have come across tend to be very overpowering if you just follow the instructions for re-hydrating them.
That's the thing I love most about dried Shiitakes.
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Old 02-17-2008, 11:42 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by college_cook View Post
That's the thing I love most about dried Shiitakes.
Okay, but under what circumstance?

Do you have any information on practical application that can help the rest of us understand and utilize the this, and perhaps expand it to other areas of cooking?

Please explain.
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Old 02-18-2008, 12:02 AM   #14
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i think college cook means that the strong taste of shiitakes is what he loves. i happen to feel the same way.

gg, it's perfectly ok to rehydrate dried shiitakes overnight. i often will put up a container in the fridge if i know that i'll need them in the next day or two.

i rehydrate my sliced shiitakes in a well sealed pint container by cramming as many as i can, then filling it with cold water under a running tap and sealing it so all of the air escapes. it is put into the fridge, then burped again a little while later and a little more water added to remove the last bubbles. they're soft enough to use in just a few hours, but they seem to reach full rehydration overnight. i've left them for 2 days without a problem.

and don't throw away the water. it's got great shiitake flavor.

by this method, whole, thicker dried mushrooms always take overnight, or they'll be a little leathery.
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Old 02-18-2008, 11:00 AM   #15
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Coming late to this party, but dried Shitake mushrooms are a STAPLE in my pantry. I always have a tightly sealed bag of them on hand since I do a lot of Asian cooking, as well as vegetarian recipes that call for them. Same with Wood Ear fungi as well.

I rehydrate them in a bowl along with hot tap water for about 15-30 minutes, depending on the thickness of the mushrooms. If I don't need the resulting liquid for the dish I'm making, I toss it & refresh the bowl with new hot tap water every few minutes to soften them up quicker. If I do need the liquid, before use I always strain it thru a paper coffee filter, as it can frequently contain grit (even tho Shitakes grow out of logs instead of soil).

While I always rehydrate them when I need them, I don't see any reason why you couldn't do it ahead of time & keep them in the fridge for a day or two.
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Old 02-22-2008, 10:00 PM   #16
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I love the dried sliced shitake mushrooms, too, as they are easy and quick to rehydrate. Just a few minutes at most. I take cup of soups and when I add hot water I throw a few of the dried slices in and it gives a wonderful meaty texture to it. I find mine at the Asian grocery store. They're great thrown into stews and soups and there are no stems to cut out either.
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Old 02-23-2008, 09:00 AM   #17
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In Bangkok's huge Chinatown is a busy, crowded old market alley lined with stores selling local and imported dried goods, foodstuff, herbs, spices, trinkets, baked goods, cooking utensils, fresh meat, fresh fish, live crabs, etc.

I buy my dried shiitakes there from stores that sell them in bins. Various bins contain different shiitake varieties. I like to select my own dried mushrooms for weighing. Here are my mom's tips on choosing good quality dried shiitake:

- Japanese shiitakes are superior (but more expensive)
- Choose a variety with caps that have many whitish spots (Uniformly dark caps are not good quality)
- Don't choose caps that are too thick or too thin.
- Choose mushrooms with short stumps, to get more bang for your buck since the stumps are tough, chewy, and usually discarded.
- The gills must be whitish. Yellowish/brownish gills means old stock. Avoid them.
- Smell the mushrooms. Pick the variety with good fragrant mushroom smell.

Hope these tips are informative.
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Old 02-23-2008, 09:23 AM   #18
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Speaking of Shitakes - although a little OT - our local Wal-Mart recently began carrying a new product: small cans of sliced Shitake mushrooms! So of course, since I'm a sucker for impulse purchases like this, I had to buy a can (believe it was $.84).

Granted, I don't use canned mushrooms frequently, but always keep a couple of cans on hand for impromptu use if I don't have fresh ones in the fridge & need them for a recipe. Haven't used the canned Shitakes yet, but am thinking of tossing them into an Egg Foo Yung or a quick stirfry. Will let you know what they're like.
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Old 02-23-2008, 09:28 AM   #19
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yes they are, thanks chops!

i've avoided the more whitish spotted ones because i thought it was a mold or something growing on old or impoperly kept 'shrooms.
i'm gald to know what to look for now.

btw, i know it's a "mom" tip, but what do you mean by "too thick or too thin"? any guess at the actual dimension? no more than 1 cm, maybe?

it seems to me that they only grow thicker the larger the cap gets, unlike a portobello, which starts it's fungal life as a chunky crimini.
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Old 02-23-2008, 10:43 AM   #20
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Hi Bucky, glad to help!

I forgot to mention that it's better if the caps with whitish spots are not smooth but textured -- sort of embossed, if you get what I mean.

Ya, 1 cm should be good.

:-)
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