Portobello mushrooms are familiar because of their large meaty caps. Conveniently, they are the size of hamburger buns – making them perfect as an addition or substitute to hamburgers. Their fleshy texture makes these mushrooms popular in various forms of cooking. But before we get into the tasty portobello mushroom, lets quickly go through some mushroom handling tips!
General Mushroom Storing and Cleaning Tips
Don’t store mushrooms for too long in your fridge to keep them fresh and delicious. They keep best in a partially covered bag, preferably somewhere that is well circulated like the crisper in your fridge.
There are a lot of opinions on how to handle mushrooms. Most of these surround around mushrooms “absorbing water”. At times like this I turn to science (or let people like Serious Eats handle it). Turns out, mushrooms are most likely ok with being around water. I like to rinse my mushrooms if they are extremely dirt-y and gently wipe with a paper towel before I cut them. I also prefer to trim off a bit of the dried mushroom stems that can be quite tough to chew some times. Although a fungus, mushrooms are grown on sanitized organic matter. In other words, the “dirt” is technically all edible. In other words, don’t worry about dirty dirt.
Technically speaking, portobello mushrooms are not that different from crimini mushrooms. To be exact, crimini mushrooms are portobello mushrooms, just a lot younger. It goes without saying that Portobello mushroom stems can grow to be quite tough. That’s why the first step is to remove the stem of these mushrooms but grasping firmly where it connects to the mushroom cap and snap gently.
Next, are the gills of portobello mushrooms. Although they are “edible”, the gills create a brown color and may even add a different texture to the dish. I prefer to remove them from my dishes. The easiest way to do this is to use a spoon and scrape starting where the stem came off. Scrape in the opposite direction the gills grow, or “against the grain” if you will. For me, this meant going counterclockwise.
When this was done, I wiped my mushrooms down, and trimmed off the bottom of the mushroom so that any remaining gills that wasn’t scraped off is trimmed off. LIke this!
That’s pretty much everything there is to it! Simple right? Now you can use your portobello mushrooms in anything, or just sauté a cap with some olive oil, butter, salt, and pepper and enjoy a la carte! And just in case you’re wondering… this totally serves as a preface/teaser to something tasty… here’s a sneak peak of whats to come!