Morel mushrooms are a rite of spring for many people who enjoy hunting for these tasty delicacies in the wild. Once you gather your morels and bring them home to your kitchen, the task of carefully cleaning and preparing them begins. Morel mushrooms have irregular crevices that you must handle carefully to avoid damaging the tender and fragile mushrooms. After you clean the morels, store them properly so they will stay fresh and delicious.
Things You'll Need
Place a morel mushroom on its side on a flat counter top. Place your hand over the mushroom and gently roll it back and forth to release dirt and other debris that may be hiding within the crevices of the morel mushroom.
Rinse the morel mushrooms lightly only if you will be preparing them immediately. If you are only cleaning the mushrooms to store them, do not wash them with water.
Place the morel mushrooms into a small paper lunch bag and loosely fold the top of the bag down once. Place the lunch bag into the refrigerator and store the morels in the refrigerator for up to three days.
Dehydrate the mushrooms by placing them in a single layer on the trays of a food dehydrator. Set the dehydrator to 100 degrees Fahrenheit and turn the dehydrator on. Dry the morels until they have wrinkles and feel hard when you tap them lightly. This should not take more than 1 to 2 hours.
Store dehydrated morels in a sealed plastic container for six to 12 months. Reconstitute dehydrated morel mushrooms by soaking them in warm milk until they are soft again.
Freeze morels by placing them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Place the baking sheet into the freezer and freeze the morel mushrooms until they are solidly frozen. Remove the frozen morels from the freezer and place them into a plastic freezer bag. Seal the bag and place it in the freezer. Freeze morels for up to one year.
Another option for freezing morels is to fry them over medium heat them until they are approximately halfway cooked. Remove them from the heat and cool them to room temperature. Place the morel mushrooms into a plastic freezer bag and seal the bag. Freeze the morels for up to one year.