Tuesday, August 28, 2007
The Cremini Mushroom: Beats the Button in a Pan
I'm here working in New York for a few days before heading out to the beach for a final summer foray. While I'm alone here (and I mean really alone, it appears that everyone has left NYC for somewhere else) I've been trying to cook for myself rather than eat take out food. Although nothing I have cooked is worth repeating to anyone, I have been having great success sauteeing cremini mushrooms. Cremini, or crimini, mushrooms are baby portobello mushrooms.
One of the problems I have always had sauteeing white button mushrooms ("normal" mushrooms) is that they contain a lot of liquid and tend to steam rather than brown. This is especially true if you need to prepare a lot of mushrooms and don't have the time to cook them in small batches. Cremini mushrooms, in addition to having a more "earthy" flavor, tend to have less water weight than the white button mushroom. As long as you have enough oil and a hot pan, they saute nicely leaving you with mildly browned mushrooms. If you use a pan that retains a lot of heat, such as cast iron, you can literally fill the bottom with creminis and still come up with an attractive, tasty product.