Powdered porcini mushrooms are one of my favorite secret weapons in the kitchen. It’s an almost instant way to add an incredible depth of earthy flavor to meats, veggies, and just about everything in between.
Today’s article is all technique, no recipe. And honestly? It couldn’t be simpler. All you need is a package of dried porcini and a coffee grinder.
About porcini mushrooms
Porcini mushrooms (a.k.a. boletus edulis) are large, pale-ish brown, edible mushrooms that grow in the wild. They’re also known by their French name, cepes.
Fresh porcini can be hard to find in the U.S., but many grocers and gourmet shops will carry the mushroom dried. To reconstitute porcini, soak the dried mushroom in hot water for 20-30 minutes.
Grinding dried porcini mushrooms into a powder is a great way to preserve their flavor and make them easy to use in the kitchen.
Porcini Powder: Where to buy dried porcini mushrooms
Here are the dried porcini I picked up at the market:
Porcini Powder: 5 uses for powdered porcini
There are a lot of different ways you can use powdered porcini. Here are 5 ideas.
1. Rub a few steaks with olive oil, sprinkle with porcini powder, then sear them for an unbelievable crust (more info on this one to come tomorrow…)
2. Saute diced potatoes in duck fat and powdered porcini for out-of-this world hash browns
3. Add some into dough for buttermilk biscuits or buns studded with crispy bacon
4. Stir into chicken gravy or sprinkle on herb-encrusted chicken legs
5. Sprinkle on a pork loin or whole chicken before roasting
How to Make Porcini Powder: Grind up the dried porcini mushrooms
Really? That’s it.
Pick through your porcini, and discard any small stones or funky-looking mushrooms.
If your dried porcini are too big to fit in a coffee grinder, break them into smaller pieces. Alternately, pulse them a few times in a food processor.
When they’re small enough to fit, add a handful to your coffee grinder. Grind the mushrooms well. Thirty seconds or so ought to do it.
Let the powder settle for a minute or two before you take the cover off your coffee grinder.
You want them to break down into a fine powder, like this:
Transfer to a clean, dry bottle or jar. Keep in a cool, dark place. Will keep for months.
Stay tuned tomorrow for a fabulous, porcini-encrusted steak recipe.