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How to store mushrooms? We tell you! – Italian Cuisine



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From the end of August to the beginning of October they are organized trips in the woods in search of mushrooms! We equip ourselves with shoes suitable for crumbly soil, a small knife to collect mushrooms and the inevitable wicker basket for transport. An activity with the scent of earth and of nature that makes us go home satisfied and with the side dish ready! But let's assume (which is quite rare) that you don't want to eat the collected mushrooms right away and keep them for the winter period? What are the most suitable conservation methods for mushrooms? How to clean, store and dry them properly? Find out with us!

Choose mushrooms
No, they are not all the same. They don't all give the same yield. If you are wondering which varieties of mushrooms are most suitable for conservation, you are on the right article!
191289 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/funghi-porcini-@salepepe.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Porcini mushrooms:
the best. They boast a very fragrant and very firm pulp; this variety lends itself very well to being stored in any way: in oil, frozen and even dried.

191290 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/funghi-champignon-@salepepe.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Champignon mushrooms: suitable for preservation in oil. An advice? When you go to preserve them in oil, add some aromatic herbs or spices, you will give more flavor and character to a mushroom with a very soft and delicate flavor.

191291 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/funghi-finfeli-@salepepe.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;

Chanterelle mushrooms: very thin. This variety of mushroom is not particularly fleshy therefore, it is not recommended to dry them. They give their best if preserved in oil.

Clean the mushrooms
First rule: do not pass them under water, the mushrooms must be cleaned before being dried by following these simple rules. As a first step you will have to cut the end of the stem then, with a potato peeler, peel the stem removing the most earthy part. With the help of a hard bristle brush or a brush carefully clean the stem and head. Let's move on to the chapels: take a small knife and scrape them gently eliminating all the excess land then, with the help of a damp cloth, wipe them gently to remove any residues. It is true, they are the kings of the wood, and as such they are a much coveted meal even by parasites. How to check that there are none? Slice the chapels and lightly salt the slices: if they contain small insects they will come out in a few moments. Otherwise they will be ready to be dried and stored.

Dry the mushrooms
But do you know that there are more drying methods? Today we will talk about drying with wire, in the oven, in crates. For each type of drying, we advise you to prefer porcini mushrooms, firm and fresh.

191293 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/conservare-i-funghi-@salepepe.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Drying with wire: here you can choose whether to dry the whole mushrooms, especially if they are small in size, otherwise cut them in slices of 3-4 mm. The first step is to to clean mushrooms, avoid washing them under running water, at this stage use a small brush or a hard bristle brush to remove any residue of earth. Next, thread a large needle with a long thread of kitchen yarn and pierce the mushroom slices as if you were making necklaces out of them. Don't "sew" the mushroom slices too close together, always leave a little space between one slice and another in order to let air pass and avoiding the creation of humidity. Hanging your mushroom necklaces in the sun and in an airy place: after 24 hours you will get fragrant slices of dried mushrooms. Yes, we know, for a few days, especially in the North, the temperatures have dropped a lot and it is not always possible to dry mushrooms with the wire method. But fear not, try drying in the oven!

191294 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/essiccare-i-funghi-@salepepe.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Oven drying: we assume that this method is not as fast as the first one, it will take a long time. Get started cleaning (always without water but with a brush or a small brush) e cutting sliced ​​mushrooms not too thin and spread them on a baking sheet lined with baking paper. Turn on the oven, preferably ventilated, at a very low temperature, 50-60 ° at the most. Keep them warm for about 2 hours taking care never to close the door, keep it slightly ajar. After two hours, take them out of the oven and place them in dry jars, close them with their lids and leave them in the pantry until ready for use. Attention, read carefully: do not leave them in the oven for more than two hours, if you dry them too much you risk tasting their scent and making it vanish.

191295 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/essiccare-i-funghi-@salepepe-1.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Drying in boxes: first of all get yourself a wooden box, the classic ones for the transport of fruit and vegetables. Then proceed with cleaning the mushrooms and cut them into slices of a couple of millimeters. Arrange the slices in a row, always taking care to leave space between each of them to promote air circulation. Now, if a very hot sun still shines in your city, you can take advantage of it to dry the mushrooms under its rays; after 5 or 6 hours turn mushrooms and leave them exposed to the sun for the same amount of time. Once dried, you can place them in very dry glass jars.

The litmus test to understand if your mushrooms have dried properly is to break one and see its inside: if it is still wet, let it dry a little longer!

Duration: dried mushrooms last up to a year if stored correctly. Check every now and then that no mold has formed inside the jars.

And if you would like freeze the mushrooms? Follow our tips to freeze them cooked or raw.

191296 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/congelare-i-funghi-@salepepe.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Freeze and thaw raw mushrooms
First of all make sure that your freezer reaches a minimum temperature of -25 °, at higher temperatures, the mushrooms will not freeze properly and the result will be disappointing. Then, once cleaned properly, choose mushrooms that have the same size, otherwise cut them into regular slices: it is a little trick to ensure that they freeze at the same time and not in several phases. Put them in the special bags, let the excess air out, seal the bag and place the mushrooms in the freezer drawer. For defrost raw mushrooms the first piece of advice we give you is not to let them defrost at room temperature because they would become too soft and even during cooking the consistency is not optimal. Therefore, the best way to thaw them is to immerse the bag (still closed) for a few seconds in boiling water so that they soften without absorbing excess water.

191297 "src =" https://www.salepepe.it/files/2021/09/congelare-i-funghi-@salepepe-.jpg "width =" 210 "style =" float: left;Freeze and thaw the cooked mushrooms
The first method is undoubtedly the fastest and most immediate; freezing cooked mushrooms takes longer but (and there is always a but!) better preserves the scent of mushrooms once thawed. Proceed: fry a chopped shallot in a knob of butter (the less fat you use, the longer the storage time: you can always integrate them when heating the mushrooms), add the sliced ​​mushrooms and sauté them over high heat for 5-6 minutes. Add salt before removing from the heat and let it cool as quickly as possible. Divide the mushrooms into single-serving glass freezer containers, avoiding overfilling them, then place them in the freezer. When needed thaw them following this method: take a pan, transfer the still frozen mushrooms and let them defrost over very low heat. At this stage you can also choose to add an aromatic mince to start flavoring them!

Duration: on average, frozen mushrooms, both cooked and raw, last 3 months. If stored longer they risk losing their aroma, taste and consistency.

September 2021

Posted on 09/29/2021


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How to store aromatic herbs for the winter? – Italian Cuisine

We have several options: dry them, freeze them, salt them or make a great pesto!

A summer longer than usual, a particularly lucky green thumb and loving care have ensured that your herbs, in pots or on the ground, are still beautiful and luxuriant, but are you afraid that they will not survive the first colds?
Here are some ideas for keep them for the winter.


Do you love aromatic herbs in the kitchen? It will be wonderful to release its flavors, aromas and memories into sauces, soups, roasts and all the warmer and tastier you will want to cook in the months that separate us from next spring; even more beautiful to make it a decorative bouquet to set up your table.

How to store aromatic herbs for the winter

1. Dry
Dried aromatic herbs are perfect in the kitchen, as a flavor to integrate (and try to reduce) sea salt both in cooked and raw preparations, but also as infusions or packaged in small gifts
To dry and preserve the aromatic herbs, once you have collected the desired sprigs, wash them well, dry them (preferably with the help of a centrifuge) and then hang them upside down in a warm place (the proximity of a radiator is perfect), indicatively for a couple of days, but a lot depends on the humidity of the room, so check periodically to understand when they are ready. When the leaves are dry, remove them from their twig and store them in paper or natural fabric bags, or in glass jars. For the herbs you plan to use in infusions or decoctions (mint, linden, mallow …) you can keep whole flowers and leaves; for those you prefer as a condiment (marjoram, oregano …) it is better to crumble the leaves after detaching them from the twig so that they are already perfectly ready for use.

2. In salt
The simplest secret for a soup that you smell in summer is a fresh basil leaf. It is just as simple to have it always available: gently wash and dry your basil leaves and place them in a jar alternating them with a layer of fine sea salt.
Even sage and rosemary, combined with salt, are fragrant comfort seasonings for the winter. In this case we prepare a flavored salt and the recipe is very simple as well as super customizable (you can mix the herbs you prefer, in the quantities you prefer): you have to wash and dry the leaves very well, cut them with a sharp crescent and place them in a jar with salt and ground pepper. To be kept in the refrigerator, or to be given away at Christmas!

DIY flavored salt

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3. Freeze
The fastest and most functional technique, and two herbs above all for which it lends itself perfectly: chives and parsley. Wash the leaves, dry them very well and cut them finely with a scissors or a sharp knife and then put them in the freezer in a plastic or glass food container or, if you need to save space, in a food bag. If necessary, you can use them in cooking directly from the freezer or, always frozen, as a seasoning or final garnish of any hot dish depending on your

How and where to use parsley

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4. Frozen in oil
Rosemary, sage,
thyme, oregano and all aromatic herbs with a more structured leaf can be stored in oil (or in broth) in the freezer for later use during cooking.
The quickest technique is to wash and roughly cut the herbs and then insert them in the ice cubes, which will be filled – each one – for two thirds with the desired herb and for the remaining third with the oil. Left to freeze in the freezer overnight, the flavored cubes can then be extracted from the tray and placed in space-saving bags (to be labeled with the name of the herb inserted). Each cube can contain a single variety of grass, or you can invent your favorite bouquets and combinations. All those herbs that plan to use raw or at the end of cooking do not lend themselves very well to this preservation technique.

4. Pesto
A great classic for storing herbs, and basil in particular, is basil pesto. Covered with oil in a closed jar, it will keep perfectly in the refrigerator, but if you prefer to stock up for the winter, you can also freeze it. The ideal in this case is to portion it fresh so as to thaw only the necessary from time to time, an excellent way to do it is once again that of the ice trays, from which a cube or more will be extracted from time to time depending on the amount of seasoning needed.

How to store tomatoes – Italian Cuisine

How to store tomatoes

Small tips to appreciate as long as possible that unmistakable taste of tomato that refers to the Mediterranean, to summer, to the carefree time of the holiday.

The tomato it is among the most loved vegetables, especially in the summer season when we can choose from dozens of quality and we can count on its freshness and its unmistakable summer scent. But after August and September, finding good tomatoes becomes impossible so it is important to start stocking up now. And we don't throw anything away from tomatoes: from the seeds, which you can keep and sow for the next season, up to the peel. Here are the preparations for storing tomatoes all year round.

The classic sauce

How many of you remember grandmothers and mothers struggling with the famous salsa at the end of August? Made strictly with San Marzano tomatoes it is easy to prepare, even if with due care when sterilizing the vessels.

Then wash the cans with water and place them inside a large pot, better put a tea towel between the jars so as not to move them during the boiling. Fill the pot with water and boil for 30 minutes. Once cooled, they must be pulled out of the water and allowed to drip upside down.
Separately, cut the tomatoes into small pieces and cook them without adding flavorings (at least a few basil leaves) and a handful of salt, turning them often. Cover them and cook (with the lid open) for about 40 minutes.
Pass the tomatoes with the vegetable mill, fill the jars directly, close them with the lids and turn them upside down.
The pots must be laid back in the first pan with the tea towels and left to boil for another 30 minutes. Once completely cooled they can be turned and placed in a pantry in a dark place. To test the success of the sterilization it is necessary to check the vacuum, if pressing the cap in the center it will turn out flat then everything is successful, otherwise the sterilization must be repeated.
If you like, you can avoid the passage with the vegetable mill and put the tomatoes in pieces.

Dry tomatoes

What extra touch do the dry tomatoes canapés, salads or fish sauces?

Preparing them is easy, you just need a little patience. Different varieties can be used: the Ciliegini, the Piccadilly or the San Marzano. A word of advice: the smaller they are, the better the result.

Tomatoes should be washed, cut in half or quarters, if they are larger, and dusted with salt. They should then be placed on grills, such as those used for barbecuing, and left in the sun for two or three weeks. Remember to turn them at least once a day, so that they dry on both sides evenly. At night they should be stored in an airy place. Together with the tomatoes you can dry onions or garlic in thin slices.
When dried, they can be kept in tightly closed containers for a few months.

Dried Tomatoes in Oil

For an even more delicious result, dried tomatoes can be put in oil. In this case, put an equal amount of water and vinegar in a saucepan and boil them for a few minutes. After draining them, dry them with paper towels and place them inside sterilized jars, pressing them well, so that no air bubbles form. Cover everything with extra virgin olive oil, remembering to leave a centimeter of space between the cap and the food. To flavor them, you can add capers, thyme, garlic cloves and oregano.

Finally, sterilize the cans with tomatoes in boiling water for about an hour: after this time, turn them upside down leaving them in this position until they have cooled down. To make sure that the vacuum, press on the cap, making sure that a notch has been created and that pressing does not make you feel the classic click-clack. If it should feel, the vacuum has failed.

After two weeks, the tomatoes are ready to be enjoyed.

Confit tomatoes

Appetizing and surprising, confit cherry tomatoes can be eaten alone or as a side dish for various dishes. The technique, imported from France, consists of long and low temperature cooking. The most suitable tomato for this preparation is the cherry: cut in half and place on the side of the pulp on a baking tray covered with parchment paper. The cherry tomatoes are sprinkled with a spoonful of sugar and a pinch of salt, and, if desired, they can be covered with thin strips of garlic. Bake everything at 150 degrees for about two hours: once ready, sprinkle with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and cover with basil or oregano leaves. They can be kept in the refrigerator, in a tightly closed jar, for a few weeks.

Tomato powder

As we said: nothing is thrown away from tomatoes! If you have cooked San Marzano chili, you will have a kitchen full of tomato peels to throw away … but no! All the skins that the vegetable mill will discard must be collected and distributed on the baking trays and left to dry in the oven at 60 ° for at least 4 hours. When they are dry, beat them with a mortar and store the powder obtained in airtight jars.
It will be useful in winter, when you want to give perfume to your pasta or character to stewed meat dishes.

Tomato water

If you watch the cooking programs or like to wander among the starred restaurants you will have seen that among the trends of gourmet dishes there has been tomato water for some years: fresh and acidic, it allows us to pretend to be chefs for a day adding originality to the dishes.
It goes well with spaghetti and Sorbillo knows that it cooks his own, with tomato, a concentrate of flavor, but it is also suitable for other preparations, jellied and added to the salad, perhaps octopus or used instead of juice. tomato for a Bloody Mary in transparency.
How is tomato water obtained?
As we said, nothing is thrown away from the tomato and while you are preparing a pasta, the tomato water is already beautiful: cut the perini in half, squeeze them, emptying them of liquid and seeds and filter the liquid with a dense mesh strainer. Otherwise you can peel and cut the tomatoes and put them in the mixer, then place the pulp on a towel suspended on a bowl and after 12 hours collect all the liquid.

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