Edit ModuleShow Tags

Fall Mushroom Season


Published:

A bowl full of orecchiette pasta at the Modern Cafe last weekend reminded me that fall is in full force. It wasn’t the pasta; it wasn’t the tender braised beef; it wasn’t the flakes of melting parmesan; it was the chicken-of-the-woods mushrooms that reminded me that fall mushroom season is upon us.

Laetiporus, known as chicken-of-the-woods or sulfur shelf mushrooms, are harvested from hardwood tree trunks in both deciduous and coniferous regions of Minnesota between August and October. Mild in flavor, meaty in texture, chicken-of-the-woods is as versatile as its namesake, which makes it a great mushroom for sauces, stews, or pasta dishes. For a simple preparation, sauté the chicken-of-the-woods with butter, garlic, shallots, salt, and pepper for five to seven minutes, toss with fresh pasta, and top with shavings of Shepherd’s Way Friesago cheese.

Grifola frondosa, known as maitake or hen-of-the-woods mushrooms, are another mushroom variety making an appearance this time of year. Like chicken-of-the-woods, hen-of-the-woods often grows in the same place for a number of years in succession. While it’s meaty in texture like the chicken-of-the-woods, hen-of-the-woods has an earthier flavor. Valued for its flavor, and rich in vitamins B1, B2, D, as well as vegetable fiber, hen-of-the-woods mushrooms are flavorful when roasted whole, stir-fried with bitter greens and other wild mushrooms, or battered and deep fried, tempura style.

Both can be found in the wild, or in co-ops around the Twin Cities (if you intend to forage for mushrooms, precaution is required—take a look at the Minnesota Mycological Society’s website for more information). Whether foraging in the wild or shopping at the co-op, avoid any woody specimens, and go for the tender pieces. And while you’re carting them home, know that you’re part of an ancient tradition. After all, edible mushroom species have been found in association with 13,000-year-old ruins in South America!

Edit ModuleShow Tags

About This Blog

Minnesota Monthly's Taste Blog answers your restaurant and dining questions, dishes on latest discoveries, reflects on breaking news, and generally brings the plate to the page with a skilled crew of experts: Learn more about the Taste bloggers.

Have a food-related question? Email rhutton@mnmo.com

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Taste Blog

Tacos & Tequila After Dark

Kick off your Super Bowl celebrations with Minnesota Monthly. Dance the night away at our exclusive, first annual Tacos & Tequila After Dark event on Jan. 31 from 9 p.m. to the stroke of midnight.

Posole with Chorizo, Pepitas and Cotija Recipe

Spice up your day with comforting, hearty South-of-the-Border inspired soup

3 Things to Eat This Week: Jan. 10–14

Banana cake with peanut butter frosting, plus two more things to eat, recommended by food critic Joy Summers

Roasted Vegetable Ratatouille Recipe

A healthy, flavorful vegetable stew is made even easier in your slow cooker

35 Bucks for a Cocktail. Is It Worth It?

A NE Minneapolis speakeasy experience with a premium cocktail. But should you pay $35?

Mediterranean White Bean Hummus Recipe

A different savory dip for veggies, crackers or bread will be a welcome change of pace in this season of sweets

Best Restaurants of 2017

Food critic Jason DeRusha picks the best new and current restaurants in the Twin Cities Minneapolis and St. Paul and suburbs

3 Things to Eat This Week: Dec. 19–25

Before the holidays conclude, hit up these three Twin Cities spots for festive feasting

The Most Instagrammable Twin Cities Cafes and Restaurants of 2017

Looking to spruce up your Instagram? The food at these local cafes and restaurants looks as good as it tastes.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags