Extra Helpings: Mushroom Madness


Stephanie asks: How do I clean mushrooms… and why do they always get slimy after a few days even if I haven’t opened the package?

Despite everything you’ve probably heard, yes, it IS okay to get mushrooms wet to clean them. Rinse QUICKLY in cool water and brush off any clinging dirt with a paper towel (or you can use one of those fancy-do mushroom brushes). The operative word is QUICKLY. The little water that seeps in will evaporate when the mushrooms are cooked.

I can only guess as to what is causing the slime factor, but here are a few tips that may keep your mushrooms fresher:

• Wash the mushrooms just before using… they’re like little sponges that absorb water (which is why you rinse them QUICKLY).

• Store mushrooms in a brown paper bag with a paper towel inside on a refrigerator shelf (rather than in the crisper). Don’t store them in a plastic bag.

• Keeping them in those plastic covered foam containers is okay for a day or two, but if you aren’t using the mushrooms right away, remove them from the container (maybe this is why they are slimy!).

• Mushrooms, no matter what the color, should be firm and free of soft dark spots and pits.

• Mushrooms should smell like the earth… woodsy.

Do you love mushrooms? What’s your favorite way to enjoy them?


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I’m Christina Chavez

I was a TV journalist for many years, but with a house full of kids I decided to come off the road, go to culinary school and follow my passion for cooking. Mama’s High Strung is all about food… everything from creative recipe ideas to some really cool kitchen gadgets and cooking tips. I live in Chicago, but I love to travel and write about my food discoveries! You can reach me by email: mamashighstrung@gmail.com