Photo by Graham Steinruck
Provenance of Dish
Hericium mushrooms always reminded me of crab meat in texture and when used in a Maryland style crab cake with a bit of Japanese influence they really shine! They also freeze well making them a great way to preserve these ephemeral mushrooms.
8 oz. fresh Hericium mushrooms
1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning (or similar)
1 egg (or egg replacer)
1/4 c. diced red pepper
1/4 c. diced shallot
1/2 tbsp. minced parsley (optional)
1 tbsp. Mayonnaise (optional)
1 tsp. Dijon mustard (optional)
1 1/2 c. Panko Japanese breadcrumbs
Salt to taste
1. Pull apart mushrooms into smaller pieces that resemble crab pieces. Place in a large bowl. Season with Old bay seasoning and some fresh lemon juice to coat.
2. In a small pan wilt the diced shallot and red pepper in a small amount of olive oil until onions are translucent. Set aside to cool.
3. Whisk egg until evenly blended. Add mayonnaise and mustard and whisk until incorporated.
4. Add egg mixture and onions, peppers, and parsley to mushrooms and mix.
5. In a separate large bowl add panko breadcrumbs. Divide mixture into six equal parts. Pick up a sixth of the the mixture into your hand and gently form into a ball. Over the bowl of breadcrumbs sprinkle a generous amount of breadcrumbs over the top of the ball and press it firmly with your hands. Flip it over and repeat by sprinkling more breadcrumbs over it and pressing firmly. The liquid should be absorbed by the breadcrumbs. Don’t worry, if they seem to be falling apart just repeat the breadcrumb and pressing until they pressed together like a 1 inch thick hamburger patty. Cover patties and refrigerate for at least an hour. You can vacuum seal and freeze them at this point for later use.
6. In a large skillet add 2 tablespoons of oil and bring to a medium-low heat. Add the patties making sure they aren’t touching each other in the pan. Cook for about 3-5 minutes (or until browned) and gently flip. Cook for another 3-4 minutes, flip again cook for another minute or so. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels. Serve with lemon wedges and spicy lemon aioli. These are ready to eat as is or with a poached egg on top with Hollandaise as a breakfast dish.