Marinated mushrooms are always a favorite, whether served as appetizers or as a side dish. This vegetarian delight is surprisingly easy to make. Here's how to marinate mushrooms:
Ingredients and supplies:
- Mushrooms (Portobello, white button, oyster, chestnut, or nearly any other kind)
- Containers for the mushrooms and marinade
- Other marinade ingredients, to taste (fresh thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns, lemon juice, salt, pepper, garlic, basil, oregano, coriander seeds, etc.)
- Prepare the mushrooms. First clean the mushrooms under cold running water. Depending on the variety of mushroom you are using, you may want to de-stalk or halve the mushrooms. You can use one variety of mushrooms, or combine several of your favorite mushroom varieties.
- Mix the marinade. For the simplest marinade, you'll just need equal parts olive oil and balsamic vinegar. This can be added on top of the mushrooms, later. If you plan to use a more complicated recipe, mix the marinade ingredients before pouring them over the mushrooms.
- Combine the mushrooms and marinade. Place the mushrooms in a plastic storage container or plastic storage bag. Cover with equal parts balsamic vinegar and olive oil, or your marinade recipe. Make sure that all sides of the mushrooms are completely coated. Shake the container to be sure that the marinade completely covers each mushroom.
- Let the mushrooms marinate. Leave the mushrooms alone for at least an hour. This provides time for the flavors of the marinade to seep into the mushrooms. You can also make them the day before you plan to serve them, and refrigerate overnight. This will allow the mushrooms time to become even more flavorful. Don't marinate much longer than that, or the mushrooms will begin to turn soft, and will no longer have any crunch.
- Cook the mushrooms. Place a pot containing the marinade and the mushrooms over medium-high heat. Cover and bring to a boil. Then uncover, and turn off the heat. Allow to cool in the marinade for about an hour. When done, drain the excess marinade.
- Grill the marinated mushrooms. This is optional, but delicious. Instead of boiling the mushrooms, grill the mushrooms on the barbecue, just as you would any other vegetable. It should take less than 5 minutes on each side for the mushrooms to become tender in the middle. Watch them carefully, especially if you are using small mushrooms.
- Serve. Marinated mushrooms can be served as hors d' oeuvres, and are often served as a side dish with a green salad, roasted potatoes, or grilled meat. Serve hot or at room temperature, with toothpicks for spearing and a lemon wedge on the side. They can also be used on a mushroom burger.
These marinated mushrooms are sure to be a hit with any group. Leftover marinated mushrooms can be eaten as-is, in an omelette, or on a salad, steak, or burger the next evening. This version of marinated mushrooms is much more flavorful, and with a better texture, than the typical jarred variety.