Here are our six protagonists
Pholiota aegerita. Also called piopparelli, sometimes confused with nails (Armillariella mellea), they are of excellent quality and grow in small groups on poplar, elm and willow trunks. The flavor is delicate, fresh and slightly acidic.
Boletus edulis. Precious and sought after, they are found under chestnut, oak and beech trees, sometimes under conifers (not larches). This is the best time to pick them up and eat them, during the rest of the year you can find those imported, which are less tasty. By purchasing them, choose them small and compact, with the non-slimy hazelnut-colored hat and the underlying cream-colored sponge.
Pleurotus ostreatus. Also called oyster mushrooms or chilblains. Those that are for sale are cultivated; if you want to look for them, try old stumps or hardwood trunks. The consistency must be firm, almost tenacious. The flavor, not too pronounced, is very pleasant.
Agaricus bisporus. Much better known as "champignon", they can be white or blond. Good at every stage of growth, when they are small they are suitable for pickles, when grown up they are suitable for grilling. They are best sliced raw in a salad. Good cooked in risotto or on pizza.
Pleurotus eryngii. They grow in the South, where they can also be collected over 1500 m. They have a distinctive massive stem. Precious, fleshy and tasty, they can vary in color. Special gratin.
Cantharellus cibarium. Cockerels, chanterelles, daisies. The list of names is long, being among the most common mushrooms in Europe. Impossible not to recognize them for their color and funnel shape. Delicious in bubbling butter.
The scientific name is Coprinus comatus but perhaps someone (admirers consider it like the porcino) will know it as an "ink mushroom". The "club" shape resembles a closed umbrella. The cap is covered with white gills (comatus, that is, crowned) and develops completely adherent to the stem in young mushrooms, also excellent raw. In adults (no longer edible) the flaps of the hat detach from the stem dripping black liquid.
Here are two proposed recipes with mushrooms!
Mixed forest with blueberries and parmesan sauceIngredients for 6 people
250 g chanterelles already cleaned
250 g of cardoncelli already cleaned
250 g pioppini already cleaned
250 g of mushrooms already cleaned
250 g fresh cream
125 g blueberries
50 g Grana Padano Dop
30 g butter
garlic marjoram bay leaf
extra virgin olive oil salt – pepper
Seared the chanterelles and the pioppini for 1 minute from the boil, drain and dry them with a cloth. Reduce all mushrooms in wedges or slices. Brown separately the mushrooms in a pan with 1/2 clove of garlic, a drizzle of oil, bay leaf and marjoram, for 3-5 minutes, over a high flame. You do reduce the cream on the heat for 5 minutes from boiling, then add the grated parmesan, turn off, blend with an immersion blender and season with salt and pepper. Dissolve the butter in a small pan, add the blueberries, a pinch of salt and turn off after 3 minutes. Distribute the cream of parmesan on the plate, arrange the mushrooms and top with the blueberries. Decorated with marjoram and laurel.
Ricotta ravioli with porcini and chanterelle sauceIngredients for 4-6 people
500 g flour 0 500 g cleaned porcini mushrooms
250 g ricotta
150 g cleaned chanterelles
150 g cleaned pioppini
5 g chopped basil
10 yolks – 2 eggs
1 clove of garlic
butter – salt – pepper
Knead flour with eggs and egg yolks and a pinch of salt, until you get a firm paste, wrap it in film and let it rest in the fridge for 40 minutes. Blanch the chanterelles and the pioppini for 1-2 minutes, drain and dry them gently. Cut them into slices. Brown chanterelles, pioppini and porcinia slices in a pan with butter and garlic for 3-4 minutes. Salt and pepper at the end. Sift ricotta. Chop 150 g of the browned mushrooms and mix them with the ricotta and basil; salt and pepper, if needed. Roll out the dough into a thin sheet (2 mm) and cut out discs of 8 cm in diameter. Spread the ricotta and mushroom filling on the discs, close in a crescent, sealing the moistened edges. Boil the ravioli al dente. Drain them in the pan with the rest of the mushrooms and toss with a little butter for 1 minute. Serve the ravioli completing with sorrel leaves.
Text by Marina Migliavacca and Valeria Nava