King Oyster Mushrooms are also sold under the names King Trumpet or French Horn Mushrooms. They are a good fleshy mushroom but don't have a huge aroma when raw.
The inspiration for this recipe comes from breakfast.
One of my all time favourites is soft boiled eggs served with toast soldiers - just having it makes me feel 5 again. There's just so many good memories associated with it. Nowadays, when I want to unwind on the weekends with a leisurely breakfast, it's usually poached eggs on toast with maybe mushrooms on the side. Then a little light bulb appeared - what if I kind of mashed these two things together? What if, I made my toast soldiers out of mushrooms?
The answer is that you end up with something like this!
King Oyster Mushroom Soldiers
4 King Oyster Mushrooms, cut into quarters, lengthways
finely chopped parsley
1 egg, lightly beaten with a splash of milk
oil, for deep frying
Prepare the mushrooms:
Choose mushrooms that are fairly straight - this will make it easier to cut them into quarters. Trim off the end and the slice in half lengthways - then slice each half again.
Prepare the crumbing mixture:
There's no real measurements here - just add enough parsley and grated parmesan to suit your own tastes. To get a finer result - I place the breadcrumbs, grated parmesan and chopped parsley into a process and pulse to ensure it well mixed together. This will also help to get a really light coating on the mushrooms.
Crumb the mushrooms:
Have two shallow bowls sitting side by side. In the first place the lightly beaten egg and milk mixture, in the second, your seasoned crumbs.
Place the sliced mushrooms into the egg, make sure they are fully coated - pull one out and tap to remove any excess egg. Drop this into the crumb mixture and roll around to lightly coat. Place to one and side and repeat the process with the remaining mushrooms.
For a better result, I double crumb the mushrooms - however, when it comes to dipping them back into the egg, I only dip the stem and not the cap.
You can store these on kitchen paper in a sealed container in the fridge until ready to cook.
Fry the mushrooms:
I know deep frying is the part people are most wary of but it shouldn't be scary. If you limit the quanity of oil then it becomes much more approachable - I was taught to do this when I was about 7 so it shouldn't be an issue for adults.
I use a small saucepan and the oil is maybe 2 to 3 inches deep - you're probably looking at a cup of oil at the most.
Place the pot of a medium heat and bring it slowly up to temperature. You should be aiming to take about 1 minute to 1 and half minutes to cook these mushroom soldiers. If you feel it's browning too quickly, just remove the pot from the heat.
Cook a few at a time, don't crowd the pot and once golden, rest them on kitchen paper to remove any excess oil.
These can be eaten hot or cold - you might like to serve them as finger food with cocktails or as I've done here, as soldiers for some wonderfully soft boiled eggs.
I'm ready to make new memories with this dish!