maple apple cider
My friends who have a shiitake and maple syrup farm in upstate New York recently taught me the benefits of dry-frying mushrooms, and to be honest, it changed my life. Why are we even taught to cook mushrooms in fat? Why are we making it so difficult for ourselves? Mushrooms, with their extremely high water content, are deceptively difficult to cook well: if your pan is too cold, they’ll steam and get rubbery, if you use too much fat, they’ll soak it up, and for goodness sakes, don’t salt them too soon! Dry frying helps you avoid all of these issues, and is pretty much impossible to mess up. Just get a pan nice and hot, and toss your mushrooms in, giving them some room to breathe and release all that water, without trapping it in and steaming the whole thing. And it’s a musical technique, too! The mushrooms hiss and sizzle, and then start to squeak as you toss them in the pan. To finish them, add enough fat just to kiss the surface of the shrooms, and just before you take them out of the pan, give them a quick salt and toss. This dish is an ode to my friends at YB Forest Farm, combining their two awesome products (but using creminis from Local Roots!). It will work with any type of mushroom, and you can swap out the vinegar for balsamic if you prefer. Or top it with something else. Or eat them straight. Regardless, this recipe will change your mushroom game for the better.
maple apple cider glazed mushrooms
2 ½ c cremini mushrooms
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
⅓ c apple cider vinegar
¼ c maple syrup
½ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp red chili flakes (optional)
Trim the roots off of the mushrooms, and slice consistently, between ¼-½ inch thick.
Place a large skillet over medium high heat, and when hot, add the sliced mushrooms, trying to keep them from overlapping as much as possible. Dry fry your mushrooms, keeping the heat high, until they start to brown, then stir to flip them. Continue to let the mushrooms cook in a dry pan, allowing them to release their moisture without steaming.
While mushrooms are frying, combine apple cider vinegar and maple syrup in a small pot, and put over medium heat. Stir to dissolve maple syrup, and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat slightly, and let simmer. Reduce the glaze until it’s about ⅓ of its original volume, or until it reaches coating consistency. Remove from heat.
When mushrooms are golden on both sides, add the olive oil, and stir to coat. Let mushrooms fry just a couple minutes more, then season with salt and transfer to a plate.
Drizzle the glaze over the mushrooms and sprinkle with red chili flakes, if using. Garnish with crunchy greens.