Yipes! There is a lot more to cover, so I'm going to put these up fast and heavy! Please still ask questions, though... and luckily I won't have to leave right at 9 EST, so if people still have questions, the meeting can just go
Yipes! There is a lot more to cover, so I'm going to put these up fast and heavy! Please still ask questions, though... and luckily I won't have to leave right at 9 EST, so if people still have questions, the meeting can just go longer.
Simmered Mushrooms / Gourd continued
The next day, dump the mushrooms and their soaking water into a pan. Over medium heat, bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for about 30 minutes. (Just like when cooking stock, be sure to skim off foam, as it will ruin the flavor.)
Add the sugar and continue to cook for about 10 minutes.
Add half the soy sauce and cook 10 minutes more. Basically you are reducing the liquid so that most of the water is evaporated and most of the flavor is left behind in the mushrooms.
I was scared the whole time I was soaking and cooking these mushrooms, because they smelled pretty bad. Until the moment I added the soy sauce, I thought I was going to just throw these out. After adding the soy sauce, they smelled okay... and then after adding the mirin, my friend cutting vegetables says she was doing "one for the sushi, one for me. One for the sushi, two for me!" It was miraculous how the mirin transformed these.
After 85% of the liquid has evaporated/absorbed, add the rest of the soy sauce and the mirin. Cook while stirring until all the liquid is reduced, and the mushrooms are coated in a glossy sauce.
After they're cool enough to handle, cut off the stems (my veggie prepper ate them all!) and cut the caps into strips about the diameter of asparagus.