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An A to Z guide to choosing, storing, preparing, and cooking fresh produce and recipe ingredients.

  • Types of Mushrooms

    Chanterelle
    Prized for a fruity aroma, chanterelles range from yellow, orange, and brown to pale white or black.

    Cremini

    Similar to white mushrooms but with a firmer texture and deeper flavor, creminis are actually immature portobellos.

    Oyster

    Velvety and trumpet-shaped, oyster mushrooms have delicate brown, gray, or reddish caps on gray-white stems.

    Portobello

    Up to 6 inches across, portobellos have a big, steak-like taste and texture.

    Shiitake

    With meaty tan to dark-brown umbrella-like caps, shiitakes have a distinctively smoky flavor and taste best when cooked.

    White

    The most common type, white mushrooms range in size from tiny to jumbo.

    How to Choose Mushrooms
    Look for plump, firm, smooth-looking mushrooms whose surfaces are dry but not dried out. Tightly closed gills indicate a younger, fresher mushroom with a milder flavor. Those with open gills have a richer, more developed flavor but a shorter shelf life.

  • How to Store Mushrooms
    Refrigerated, mushrooms should last up to 7 days; whole mushrooms last much longer than sliced. Remove any plastic wrapping and store them in a paper bag to prevent moisture build-up and spoilage. Handle them carefully, as they bruise easily. Fresh mushrooms should never be frozen.

    How to Prepare Mushrooms
    Brush dirt off relatively clean mushrooms with a damp paper towel or your fingers. Dirtier ones can be rinsed quickly in cold water, then patted dry; don’t soak them, because they absorb moisture. Trim the bottoms of edible stems or break off tough stems, then slice. White mushrooms are frequently eaten raw, though cooking enhances their flavor. Cook mushrooms slowly for the best taste.

    —Melinda Page

  • How To: Clean Mushrooms

    Here are simple steps for cleaning a variety of fresh mushrooms.

     

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What's your favorite mushroom recipe?

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