Mushroom Ketchup and Powder

A recipe for a mushroom liquor and powder from The Compleat Housewife: Eliza Smith, 1736.

This recipe makes a mushroom ketchup (liquor) to use instead of Worcester sauce in cooking and the mushrooms are further dried after to use in stock powders.

To make the Mushroom Powder.

Take a peck [by volume 9 litres (2 gallons or 16 dry pints)] of Mushrooms, wash and rub them clean with a flannel rag, cutting out all the worms; but do not peel off the skins.

Put to them [add] sixteen blades of mace, forty cloves, six bay-leaves, twice as much beaten pepper as will lie on a half crown [3 cm diameter (1 1/8 inch)]; a good handful of salt, a dozen onions, a piece of butter as big as an egg, and half a pint [280 ml] of vinegar.

Stew these as fast as you can; keep the liquor for use, [strain, bottle and remove but keep the mushrooms] and dry the Mushrooms first on a broad pan in the oven; afterwards put them on sieves, [air dry on a rack or dehydrator] till they are dry enough to pound all together into powder. This quantity usually makes half a pound.


Another sort of Mushroom-Powder.

Take the large Mushrooms, wash them clean from grit, cut off the stalks, but do not peel or gill them; so put them into a kettle [strong open saucepan like a jam pan] over the fire, but no water; put a good quantity of spice of all sorts, two onions stuck with cloves, a handful of salt, some beaten pepper, and a quarter of a pound of butter; let all these stew, till the liquor is dried up in them; then take them out, and lay them on sieves to dry, till they will beat to powder; press the powder hard down in a pot, and keep it for use, what quantity you please at a time in sauce.

To pickle Mushrooms.

Take your Mushrooms fresh gathered, peel or rub them, and put them in milk, and water and salt [to soak].

When they are all peeled, take them out of that, and put them into fresh milk, water, and salt to boil, and an onion stuck with cloves; and when they have boiled a little, take them off, and take them out of that, and smother them between two flannels [kitchen paper to dry them, then put them into a preserving jar].

Then take as much good Alegar [vinegar produced by fermenting ale] as you think will cover them, and boil it with ginger, mace, nutmeg, and whole pepper.

When ’tis cold, let it be put on [pour over] your mushrooms, and cover them close.

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