Q:

What is the best way to sautee mushrooms?

A:

Quick Answer

Cooking cleaned, cut mushrooms in hot fat until tender and lightly browned results in perfectly cooked mushrooms. They recommend sautéing mushrooms in oil or butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. The fat needs to be sufficiently hot, and the mushrooms not overcrowded.

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Full Answer

Dry, clean mushrooms are best for sautéing. Keep pre-packaged mushrooms in their original packaging prior to cooking. Store loose mushrooms in a paper bag to keep them firm and to give them room to breathe. Avoid plastic bags as they can make mushrooms deteriorate quickly. Clean the mushrooms by gently wiping them with a dry paper towel to remove dirt and debris. Do not expose the mushrooms to water because water makes them soggy.

Slice or quarter the mushrooms prior to cooking. Small mushrooms can be cooked whole if desired. Heat oil or butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. A combination of both oil and butter is ideal. Oil lowers the smoke point of the butter for more even cooking, and the butter imparts flavor to the mushrooms.

Cook the mushrooms in the skillet, stirring occasionally with a heatproof spatula or wooden spoon. Make sure the fat is hot enough to produce an audible sizzle. This ensures that the mushrooms are browning rather than steaming. Avoid overcrowding of the pan, which can also result in limp, steamed mushrooms. Properly sautéed mushrooms are lightly browned and retain all of their juices.

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