Shiitake Mushrooms are one of the foundation of Asian Cuisine. Intensely flavoured when cooked, it is used in soups, braises, steamed dishes, and many more.
Dried shiitake mushrooms can easily add deep savory flavor, umami, to dishes. I like to think of them as healthy little punches of flavor since they contain no fat, and even vegans can eat them.
While fresh shiitake mushrooms are just as delicious, they can be harder to find, so having dried shiitake mushrooms stocked in your pantry means that you always have a flavorful ingredient at your fingertips. They’re easily found at Asian markets and can last for months, maybe even years, if stored in an airtight container in a cool place or the refrigerator.
Preparation of dried shiitake mushrooms:
- Cover the mushrooms in boiling water. Cover with plastic wrap to stop heat escaping. Soak for 20 minutes.
- The mushrooms should almost double in size. Drain. Strain the liquid and use in stocks and soups
- Discard the stems – they’re too tough to eat. Or keep them in stews for extra flavours. Slice the mushrooms and add to stir-fries, soups and curries.