How to Cook with Candy Cap Mushrooms
How to Use Candy Caps
The two most common methods for extracting the flavor from candy caps are steeping and grinding, but some chefs also reconstitute them. Each of these three methods offers different flavor and textural benefits, so you’ll want to pick the one that best suits your recipe. Be careful not to use too many candy caps, they’re extremely potent and can overrun other flavors in your dish if you’re not careful.
Steeping candy cap mushrooms in milk or cream is the method pastry chefs often use for imparting their flavor to ice creams, panna cotta (check out our candy cap panna cotta recipe) and chocolate ganaches. Steeping is easy and requires no special equipment.
Pros: Imparts flavor without changing textures or significantly increasing volume (so most recipes don’t have to have other ingredients adjusted for freezing, gelling, or baking chemistry/physics to work)
Cons: We’ve found that while most of the candy caps’ flavor is infused through steeping, the maple note doesn’t appear to transfer into dairy mixtures, so either keep that in mind or add additional ground candy caps directly to the recipe to compensate.
Grinding Candy Caps
You can grind dry candy caps either into pure candy cap powder or a flavored sugar blend. Use a motorized spice or coffee grinder.
● When used to dust finished plates, adds visual flair similar to dusting with cocoa powder.
● Could make some recipes gritty.
Making flavored sugars will give you the technique and proportions for a basic candy-cap flavored sugar.
Rehydrating Candy Caps
Though it’s the least commonly used technique, you can reconstitute dried candy caps as you would any other dried wild mushrooms and add them to dishes either whole or chopped.
We don’t have a lot of experience with this method, so we aren’t sure how the candy cap flavor is effected, but this might be another option. Let us know how it goes.
Post your recipe or comment here: