All mushrooms have healing powers. The white button mushroom is no different, we just don’t know exactly what those healing powers are. The white mushroom is actually an American original, found by a farmer in 1926 growing amongst some tan mushrooms. This clump was the grandaddy of all white mushrooms today. And this is the reason we don’t exactly know all its healing properties. We don’t have a thousand years of cultural use and study behind it. So don’t let anyone tell you that other mushrooms are better for you. We don’t know, do we. Use the search box and inquire on “mushroom” for a complete listing of mushrooms on this site.
White button mushrooms are good raw. Dried, they make a healthy, easy to eat snack, and of course can be made as soup and gravy. Here’s my favorite mushroom recipe. It’s a golden mushroom soup, gravy or sauce. They’re all the same it’s just how thick or thin they are. It freezes well so keep some set aside to add to a vegetable soup or to top an omelet.
16 oz. white button muchrooms – slice then chop to 1/2″ to 1/4″
1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup olive oil
3/4 cup dry sherry
2 to 4 TBL whole wheat flour (may need more)
Vegetable broth – 3 or 4 cups
Braggs liquid aminos (for salt)
Heat butter and oil in a large, heavy bottom saucepan over medium high heat. Add mushrooms and pop the lid on for a few minutes. You’re going to “sweat” the mushrooms, that is, cause them to give up moisture. Remove the lid and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until all the mushroom liquid is evaporated. You can tell when it is gone when the little bright dots of liquid are gone (oil and liquid don’t mix so the liquid appears as a bright dot). Continue cooking turning over the mushrooms every now and then. You are going to caramelize the mushrooms, cooking them to a light golden color; some might be darker and that’s okay, too. When most of the mushrooms are caramelized, add the sherry; simmer until the wine is evaporated. The alcohol goes but the flavor stays.
You’re now ready to add flour. Add a TBL at a time, stirring it in each time, until most of the oil is taken up. Continue cooking for 3 or 4 minutes until the flour is golden.
Next, add 2 cups vegetable broth. Don’t worry, as you stir, the lumps disappear and the stuff stuck to the bottom of the pan gets incorporated into the soup. Continue to add broth, a little at a time until the desired thickness is reached. Now you can turn the heat down to Medium. Add some Braggs and taste the soup for saltiness. You’re done when you like the taste.
Note: Sometimes, when I make this soup, I’m not quite satisfied with the final taste. I find a dash or two of dill vinegar (or plain white distilled vinegar) gives just the right touch. It doesn’t add “sour” but does balance the flavors. Also, when you chill the leftovers, the soup will get very thick because of the butter in it. It will loosen up when reheated.