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Monday, September 7, 2015

Puffball Mushrooms

I learned about giant puff balls almost 12 years ago here in Wisconsin and they are indeed edible and a very tasty treat. 

I have eaten them over the years and fried in butter is my favorite. They are surprisingly rich however. A single puffball will make a meal.They also dehydrate nicely for use later in soups, etc. Just slice and dehydrate.

Just be sure to cut them in half to ensure they are completely uniform and white throughout (no gills and no stem).

I am on a low carb diet and large puffballs sliced and roasted can be used as a pizza crust.Gluten free too!! Cut 1/2″ slices of Giant Puffball and fried them on both sides with Parmesan Cheese in Olive Oil, to a golden brown. Then topped them with your toppings of your choice. Baked at 350 till toppings turn golden brown.

To clean a puffball, remove any dirt using a veggie brush or paper towel. Use  very little water, as puffballs are very absorbent. Dry the mushroom thoroughly. The outer layer can cause gastrointestinal issues in some people so remove the skin with a knife before cooking.

 I found oodles of puffballs this year so I will be making "puffball powder" by basically drying them down and pulverizing. The powder is then added to various dishes and/or used as a breading. Again LOW CARB!

 Arrange the cleaned, sliced mushrooms on the dehydrator trays. 
Dry them at 110F/43C until the pieces are crispy dry. This will take 4 to 6 hours for 1/4-inch slices, up to 8 hours for thicker slices.
Allow the dried mushrooms to cool completely before transferring them to airtight containers. Store away from direct light or heat.
To use dehydrated mushrooms, pour boiling water over them  and let them soak for 20 to 30 minutes. Drain, reserving the richly flavored soaking liquid for soup stocks and sauces.
Use the rehydrated mushrooms as you would fresh mushrooms.

10-12 Large 1/2 inch slices Puffball mushrooms ( outer skin cut off)
 2 cups Panko bread crumbs
1-1/2 cups water 
1 cup flour 
1/2 cup cornstarch 
3/4 teaspoon baking powder 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder 
1/4 teaspoon black pepper 
Vegetable oil or canola oil – enough so that you have about 2 inches of oil in your pot. 

DIRECTIONS Use a clean dish towel  or brush to wipe the mushrooms clean.

Mix together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, garlic powder, and black pepper.
Add water, about 1 1/2 cups, to create the batter. 
Dip each mushroom in the batter.
Coat each mushroom in Panko bread crumbs
Heat about 2 inches of oil in a large deep fry pan to about 350 degrees
Carefully add mushrooms to the  oil 
Cook  the mushrooms  for about 7-10 minutes, or until they are golden brown and crispy.

Carefully remove mushrooms from the oil to a paper towel lined plate. Allow the mushrooms to cool for a few minutes before serving with ranch dressing. ENJOY!!

Be certain to consult a professional (or a really good field guide) in order to positively identify this plant before trying this for yourself. The owners of this site will not be held responsible for any lapses in judgment or stupidity when handling or consuming wild plants.