The oyster mushroom is very popular and with at least five members of the family cultivated in France, they will be on many menus. These family members also come in at least five colors and so they are popular not only for their taste but also for their looks.
The oyster mushrooms is found in many French recipes.
The different strains of these mushrooms vary in texture from very soft to very chewy. Their association with oysters comes from the looks of a number of family members and not from any oyster taste or texture.
Farmed pink oyster mushrooms.
In the kitchen oyster mushrooms are usually added at the last stage of cooking as they cook quickly and if left may cook down to virtually nothing, for that reason they are often used in combination with other mushrooms. Oyster mushrooms cooked for longer will often be part of a sauce.
Oyster mushrooms on French menus:
Grenadin de Veau aux Pleurotes – A small cutlet of veal prepared with oyster mushrooms.
Wild golden oyster mushrooms
Ravioles de Champignons à la Crème d’Épinard et Pleurotes Sautées – Ravioli stuffed with button mushrooms and served with a cream of spinach and lightly fried oyster mushrooms
Filet de Bœuf, Sauce au Porto, Fricassée de Cèpes, Pleurotes et Champignons de Paris – A cut from a USA beef tenderloin and in the UK a beef fillet. Here the fillet is prepared with a Port wine sauce and served with a stew of French Porcini mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, and button mushrooms. (The mushrooms offered in this dish are chosen with care. The oyster mushrooms will become the sauce in the mushrooms stew. The cepes, the French porcini mushrooms are wild mushrooms and have the most mushroom taste and the button mushrooms will offer the most texture).
Magret de Canard Roti Sauce aux Pleurotes, Pommes Sautées Maison – Roasted duck breast served with an oyster mushroom sauce and potatoes fried in the manner of the house.
Farming yellow oyster mushrooms.
Rognons de Veau, Mousseline de Charlottes, Crème de Pleurotes – Veal kidneys, served with a Charlotte potato moose and a cream of oyster mushroom sauce.
Oyster mushrooms in the languages of France’s neighbors:
(Catalan -Pleurotus ), (Dutch – oesterzwam), (German –austernseitling), (Italian – gelone), (Spanish – seta de ostra).
The King Oyster mushroom or King Trumpet Mushroom
The Eringy or Pleurote du Panicaut.
This is the largest and meatiest of the family of oyster mushrooms. It tastes and looks very different to the rest of the family with a much meatier texture and a different taste.
When young the mushroom has practically no cap, and the cultivated variety has a small cap. However, in the wild, if allowed to grow it will have a brown cap up to 6 or 7 cms across and the white stalk can be as tall as eight cms.
This is a mushroom that can be grilled, put into a soup or served raw in a salad; they cook slowly; I like them best when lightly fried and crunchy.
The King Oyster mushroom on French menus:
Risotto aux Pleurotes du Panicaut – A risotto made with the king oyster mushroom.
Ris de Veau croustillant, Cannelloni de Pomme de Terre et Eringuy Poêlé – Crispy veal sweetbreads served with potato cannelloni and king oyster mushrooms.
Filet de Bar Sauce Thé fumé, Écrasé de Pommes-de-terres et Champignon “Eringi” – European Sea Bass prepared with a smoked tea flavored sauce and served with hand-mashed potatoes and king oyster mushrooms.
A king sized wild King oyster mushroom.
N.B. When picking mushrooms in the wild remember an expert must identify them before they are eaten. In France, most pharmacists will have the phone number and addresses of volunteer mushroom experts who will check the mushrooms before you cook them.
The King oyster mushroom in the languages of France’s neighbors:
(Catalan – gírgola gírgola d’espinacal gírgola de card), (Dutch – koningsoesterzwam, kruisdistel oesterzwam), (German – kräuterseitling), (Italian – cardoncello, cardarello, gelone), (Spanish – cardo).
For information on the unpublished book behind this blog contact Bryan Newman