Dried mushrooms are a big deal–they are packed with flavor, fantastic in tons of dishes, and can be stored for essentially an eternity. You can rehydrate them and use them in soups, risottos, pasta dishes…pretty much every delicious recipe you can think of. Follow the steps listed in this article to make your own dried mushrooms.
Clean the mushrooms you are going to dry. If possible, use a brush or dry paper towel to wipe any dirt off of the mushrooms. You want to avoid getting the mushrooms wet while cleaning them because the water could cause other competing fungi or mold to grow on the mushroom while they are drying or after they have been stored. This extra fungi or mold could, in turn, make you ill if you eat it.
If there are renegade spots of dirt that won’t allow themselves to be brushed away, you can use a damp cloth or paper towel to scrub them off. Just make sure to wipe that same spot with a dry cloth or paper towel to absorb any moisture left behind.
Cut the mushrooms. The thicker the mushrooms, the longer it takes for them to dry out. To speed up the drying process, cut the mushrooms into slices approximately 1/8 inch (0.3 cm) thick. They will still have enough flavor packed into the slices that they will be an excellent addition to any dish, but they will dry in a much shorter amount of time than whole mushrooms.
Place the mushrooms on a baking sheet. Make sure that the mushrooms lay flat and side by side. None of the mushrooms should overlap, as this could cause them to fuse together while drying. Lay them out in one layer.
Do not oil the sheets, as the mushrooms will absorb the oil, changing their flavor and causing them to take longer to dry.
Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Fahrenheit (65 Celsius). Once the oven has reached the designated temperature, place the baking sheet with the mushrooms into the oven. Leave the mushrooms in for one hour.
Take the mushrooms out of the oven after an hour. When you take them out, flip them over so that they dry evenly. At this time, blot any moisture that way have risen on their surfaces during the drying process. Use a paper towel or dry cloth to remove any of the moisture.
Place the mushrooms back in the oven. Bake the mushrooms for one more hour or until they are completely dried.
When you pull the mushrooms out, check to make sure they they do not have any remaining moisture on their surface. If they do, turn them over and dab away any moisture with a paper towel, then return them to the oven.
Continue to check the mushrooms until they are fully dry. Repeat the baking and removing moisture process until the mushrooms are totally dry. A properly dehydrated mushroom should snap apart like a cracker.