Wild Mushroom Gravy Recipe

MMMM Gravy

Gravy is one of the higher purposes a dried mushroom can serve over the long and mycologically bare winter months.  I have been keen to workout a fantastic mushroom gravy for awhile now.

Basic Building Block gravy recipe in 11 words:

  1. Rehydrated Wild Mushrooms
  2. Sauteed Onions + Garlic
  3. Wine
  4. Stock + Mushrooms
  5. Butter+ Flour

So, let’s talk about this because Gravy is an art, not a science. Ingredients can be substituted. Quantities and time can be fudged. I find this recipe takes me 60 minutes from start to finish.

Mushrooms: The basic building block is about 1.5 cups of mushrooms covered in a cup of boiling water. I let that sit for 30 minutes, and often warm it up halfway through in the microwave.  Then, I squeeze/drain the water out of mushrooms. I set the stock aside to add back later.

  1. Most recipes call for discarding the sediment in the stock. I often don’t… since I picked and cleaned and dried my own mushrooms, I know the dirt level!
  2. I like to crumble up about half my dried mushrooms before rehydrating, just to make my gravy less chunky. Or, if I forget, I might knife up the chunks a bit to make them smaller. It doesn’t seem to affect the flavor of the gravy as much as the chunkiness of the final product.
  3. You can make a single mushroom gravy like porcini or morel. My preferred way is to blend a bunch of mushrooms.  It is a good way to also mix in some non-choice (but still loved) mushrooms like dried puffballs, oyster, hawk’s wings or shrimp russulas. Of course, the straight up porcini is hard to beat!
  4. I think some fresh mushrooms would also be good mixed in, but you are on your own with that… I don’t have any special advice other than consider your mycologically integrity before you mix store-bought with hard-fought.

Onions and Garlic: The basic building block is one large onion and 3-ish large garlic cloves.  Feel free to get fancier with sweet onion or vidalia or some of that whatchamachallit onion

  • Sautee in Olive Oil
  • I like a good long sauté to really turn the onions brown — 15 minutes on medium heat. I think that makes the flavor better than just getting to the “translucent” stage.  I often add the garlic half-way through since it cooks faster than the onion.

Wine: the basic building block is 1 cup of wine.

  • Pour it into the browned onions and cook on medium-high heat until it mostly evaporates, at least 10 minutes.  This is a good time to take a taste… it will help you later when you are trying to get the right wine flavor
  • There are a lot different wines you could use.
    • Port
    • Marsala
    • Cooking Marsala Wine
    • Dry white wine
    • Cooking White wine
    • Sherry
    • Vermouth
  • You are going to have to play with your own wines… I prefer a marsala and white wine, 50/50, with an extra 10% of port splashed on.
  • Cooking marsala and cooking white wine (50/50) make a perfectly awesome gravy too!

Stock + Mushrooms: use 2.5 – 3 cups of stock, starting with your mushroom soaking liquid.

  • Pour the mushrooms and stock into the pan. Cook it hard until it reduces by about 1/3 to 1/2
  • This is where you re-use your mushroom stock. You won’t have enough, so add conventional stock too
  • Watch the salt… some stock has a lot of salt
  • Consider using vegetable, beef or chicken stock
  • I mix different types of stock, but always use beef (and the mushroom stock) + chicken or vegetable in a medley.

Butter and Flour: Time to thicken with 2 TB of butter and 2 TB of flour.

  • Make a bit extra in case you want to make your stock a bit thicker.
  • I like to take some room-temperature butter and the flour and smush it all together with a spoon.
  • Then, I ladle some hot stock into that bowl and stir until I have a thick liquid.  Then, pour 1/2 of that liquid into the stock

Simmer for a few minutes and your gravy should be thick. If it isn’t thick enough, add some more.

Showing 2 comments
  • CC
    Reply

    You brilliant mushroom man. Just finished making the gravy. So good. Thought I would miss the flavor of the herbs, but this is perfect. And what about that roux? You made making roux simple and effective. Thanks!!

  • DD
    Reply

    THIS WAS SO GOOD!!! My friend licked the bowl lol. Also love your recipe writing style, tickled my brain in the best way. Thanks!

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