A vendor, I don't remember his name, so I'll call him Chef Mike, sold the most delicious garlic butter mushrooms at the Bristol Renaissance Faire in Bristol, Wisconsin (near Kenosha). Be sure to buy a quart on your way out.
From memory: Chef Mike started making and selling his garlic butter mushrooms for the King Richard's Faire in the late 1970s, today's Bristol Renaissance Faire. After chatting with Chef Mike every year and asking for the recipe, he finally told me in the mid-1990s, "My kid didn't want my business," so he'll give me his recipe, "You've come here every year for a long time, so I know you'll enjoy the mushrooms." I wrote down what he told me.
A different gentleman was stringing the pot in the same spot the following year. I bought some mushrooms — lo and behold — they were exactly the same! On my way out of the Faire, I always purchased a quart or two (one to give as a gift). I asked him about Chef Mike, "He sold me his business and retired to Arizona."
I recalculated Chef Mike's recipe for home cooks from the commercial portion size I wrote down.
Chef Mike's Garlic Butter Mushrooms Recipe:
YOU WILL BE 100% SATISFIED REMEMBERING THE TASTE AT THE FAIRE IF YOU FOLLOW THIS RECIPE EXACTLY THE FIRST TIME YOU MAKE IT.
Do you remember the mushrooms at the Renaissance Faire being too salty? Me neither!
2 pounds whole mushrooms; Button, Cremini or both, stems trimmed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 LEVEL tablespoons salt (see: Note From The Chef, below)
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper, not too coarse
10 cloves of Garlic, Very Thinly Sliced
1/2 cup of a quality dry White Wine (Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon
Blanc, Chablis, dry Reisling, or your favorite white wine)
HEED THIS NOTE FROM CHEF MIKE:
"I know that 2 tablespoons of salt seems like a lot. If you’re like me, you tend to routinely reduce the salt or totally leave the salt out of some recipes. After making several thousand pounds of mushrooms, I know one thing, if you don’t salt the mushrooms adequately while they are cooking, you’ll end up adding twice as much salt later to get the same flavor." Chef Mike
DON'T CUT THE SALT THE FIRST TIME YOU MAKE THIS!
Lightly clean the mushrooms with a mushroom brush or with a paper towel. Then, place the mushrooms in a bowl and add enough water to cover them. (Since mushrooms float, put a plate over them to weigh them down and keep them underwater.)
Add the mushrooms to a large pot.
Cover with water. Add a plate over the top that will fit INSIDE THE POT to ensure the mushrooms get an 8-hour or overnight soaking.
Next, heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add the butter and let it melt. Toss in the onions, garlic, and cracked black pepper. Give it a nice toss. Let this cook on medium heat, stirring along the way, until the onions soften, about 5-7 minutes.
DON'T BROWN OR CARAMELIZE THE ONIONS, IT WILL RUIN THE FLAVOR.
Remove the plate from the mushrooms, and add the onion mixture to the pot. Add in the salt and white wine. Stir. Cover the pot and bring the mixture to a simmer. Simmer for about 8 hours. Yes, 8 hours.
At about 6 hours in, remove the cover and bring the heat up to medium. Then cook for the remaining 2 hours.
The broth will reduce a bit, which is normal. You'll have plenty of broth, so don't water it down.
|Here, this one's for you.|
ANOTHER NOTE ABOUT SALT FROM CHEF MIKE:
"From my years of experience at running my mushroom stand at over 25 Renaissance Fairs around the country, the amount of salt had not been an issue."
A partial list of U.S. Renaissance Faires That Sold Chef Mike's Garlic Butter Mushrooms.
All Faire, Lacey, WABristol Renaissance Faire, Kenosha, WICanterbury Renaissance Faire, OregonCarolina Renaissance Festival, Concord, NCCarolina Renaissance Festival, Huntersville, NCCentral Coast Renaissance Festival, San Luis Obispo, CAColorado Renaissance Festival, Larkspur, COGlastonbury Renaissance Faire, Toledo, ORKoroneburg Renaissance Festival, Corona, CAKoroneburg Renaissance Festival, Los Angeles, A.Maine Renaissance Faire,Acton,MEMid-Michigan Renaissance Festival, Vassar, MIMidsummer Renaissance Faire, Ansonia, CTNewbourne Village Renaissance Faire, Chippewa Falls, WINorth Dakota Renaissance Faire, Fargo, NDPittsburgh Renaissance Festival, West Newton, PAPride Renaissance Tour, Lansing, MIRenaissance Fair, Orlando, FLRenaissance Festival, Austin, TXSanta Fe Renaissance Fair, Santa Fe, NMSterling Renaissance Festival, Sterling, NYUpstate Renaissance Faire, Greer, SCVermont Renaissance Faire, Stowe, VTWashington Midsummer Renaissance Faire, Snohomish, WAWest Virginia Renaissance Festival, Lewisburg, WV
Shared by Dr. Neil Gale, Ph.D.
Please come back to tell us how your mushrooms turned out.