Do not freeze!

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Posted by pinksharkmark ( on July 28, 2000 at 10:43:43:

In Reply to: Things are better all over! posted by Miguel on July 27, 2000 at 22:26:58:

The odds are that the mushrooms you will obtain have already been dried (perhaps not thoroughly) since that is the most common way they are sold by "recreational" suppliers.

If you obtain some fresh-picked ones instead, and intend to consume them "fresh" rather than dried, the best way to preserve them is the same way that Flash does.... total immersion in honey. Honey is the only food that doesn't spoil or rot, although it can be made to ferment, producing an alcoholic beverage called mead. Since they are covered in honey, oxygen can't reach them, so they won't decompose.

An alternative method that many swear by is to dry them COMPLETELY without heat. The lower the water content, the longer they will stay potent. The best way to do this is to use a commercial desiccant such as anhydrous calcium chloride. The dried mushrooms are then stored in a glass container in a CO2-saturated environment, such as I described in my recent post titled "Methods for long-term storage". If you can get your hands on nitrogen instead, even better.

Fresh mushrooms should NEVER be frozen... the freezing process ruptures the delicate fungal cell walls of the mushrooms and turns them into mush.

Go to the link below. About two-thirds of the way down the page you will see a heading titled "Mushroom Storage" that describes in more detail these methods.

Glad to hear your cycle seems to be drawing to a close. Keep up the windsurfing!


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