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Japanese mushroom on rice

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March 2021 Issue

A hearty Japanese meal that won’t weigh down your pack.

Combining dehydrated and fresh vegetables with punchy flavour, this recipe is worth the time it takes to cook – and the smells will make you the envy of the hut. Add hard-boiled egg or tofu for a protein kick.

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Prep time: 30min
Cook time: 45min
Serves: Two
Cost: $6-8

Ingredients
5 dried shiitake mushrooms
Cooking oil
1 small onion, peeled and sliced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
200g mushrooms (button, brown, anything mixed, sliced thinly)
1 tbsp miso paste
¾ cup jasmine rice (washed)
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp mirin/sake/rice wine vinegar
Salt

Garnish
Spring onion, sliced
Fresh coriander
Chilli flakes
Chopped peanuts
Sesame seeds
Dried shallots

Method
Put the dried mushrooms in a bowl and cover with 1 cup of freshly boiled water. Leave to soak for 20-30min, then remove and squeeze them out into the same bowl to reserve.

Slice the shiitake and set aside. Heat two tbsp oil in a frying pan and add the onion. Cook until soft (7-10min) then add the garlic and cook for a further 3min.

Add sliced mushrooms and cook for 5min, or until the mushrooms have started to soften and shrink. Add the miso to the pan and cook for another few minutes until the mushrooms begin to caramelise.

Add the rice to the pan and stir to ensure all grains are coated in the mixture. Pour in the mushroom water (add extra water if need be), soy sauce, mirin, and a pinch of salt. Mix and bring to boil. Cover with a lid/heatproof plate, turn down to a simmer and cook for 12-15min (until it looks like most of the liquid has been absorbed).

Keep the lid on and turn off the heat completely and leave to steam for at least 5min.

Sprinkle the spring onion, coriander, chilli flakes and crunchy toppings over before serving with chopped fresh seasonal vegetables e.g. broccoli, spinach, capsicum.

-  Isabelle Thompson