Francolin Forest Fungi

Chefs Mushroom Foraging Tips

Only eat mushrooms you know are safe to eat

Respect the environment you are in, and get lost in the magic of the forest

Avoid picking mushrooms while it is raining, or straight after – as the mushrooms would have absorbed a lot of the rain

Try not to pick the very young mushrooms

Use a wicker basket, as this will help prevent the mushrooms from sweating

Use a small pen knife to remove the mushrooms


Mushroom mousse

200g porta Bellini mushrooms

100g shiitake

2 sprigs thyme

10g basil

1 clove garlic

60g butter

80g cream cheese (room temperature)

10ml white balsamic glaze

Malden salt (taste)


Slice mushrooms with the stems on

Heat frying pan, add butter to the pan, once butter has melted add the mushrooms, herbs and garlic clove, add salt to taste


Fry mushrooms until cooked, remove the garlic & thyme. You can keep the basil with the mushrooms.


Blend together until a smooth paste. When paste has cooled down, fold into cream cheese and add the balsamic glaze. Mix until there are no lumps in the cream cheese, leave in fridge for 2 hours. Place in piping bag with a small round nozzle


Equipment needed:

Frying pan


Cutting board

Mixing bowl



Piping bag

Small round nozzle


Chefs tips: Mushrooms can be cleaned with a damp cloth or mushroom brush, never soak mushrooms, as they will absorb water



60g butter

60g caster sugar

60g cake flour

red food colouring powder

truffle powder (can be replaced with brown food colouring powder)


Cream the butter and sugar together until pale yellow in colour and the sugar has dissolved. Mix in the flour until completely combined.

Divide the mixture into two equal parts

Use the red food colouring to colour the one half, and the truffle powder for the rest.

Roll sable thin (2mm) between two baking sheets, and cut into round disks.


For the death cap (red mushroom) use a cutter the size of a R5 coin, and for the brown a cutter the size of a R2 coin.


Equipment needed:

Mixer with paddle attachment


Baking paper

Rolling pin

Cutters (Size: R5 & R2 coin)


Chefs Tip: Place in freezer to make it easier to handle later when placing them on the choux pastry


Choux buns

40g water

50g milk

2g sugar

2g salt

35g butter

50g cake flour (Sieve 3 times)

65g eggs


Preheat oven to 200 C

Place water, milk, sugar, salt & butter in a pot and melt together (butter must be completely melted) and mixture must come to a light simmer.

Remove from heat and stir in flour with a wooden spoon. The mixture should be combined and will form a smooth textured dough around the wooden spoon

In a mixer with a paddle attachment add the dough, whisk eggs and slowly add while mixing on a medium speed.

Place in piping bag with round nozzle to make it easier to pipe.

Sprinkle baking tray with water and line with baking paper (The water will help create steam to make the choux buns puff up)

Pipe dollops about 2 cm apart, For the red mushrooms pipe dollops the size of a R2 coin, and for the brown mushrooms the size of a R1 coin. The can be piped about a cm high.

Place rolled and cut out sable on top of the choux buns, sprinkle with brown sugar.

Bake at 200C for 5 min, change heat to 170C and bake for further 8min.

The Choux buns should be crisp on the outside, and hollow on the inside.


Equipment needed:

Mixer with paddle attachment


Baking paper

Piping bag


Baking tray

Wooden spoon


Medium sized pot

Measuring spoons

Kitchen Scale


Chefs Tip: The dough should be glossy, you do not have to add all the eggs. (about 5g can be left over) You do not want the dough to be too runny


Assemble mushrooms:

Leave choux buns to cool down before filling with mushroom mousse, make sure to completely fill the choux buns.



2 egg whites

30ml caster sugar

2ml citric acid

3ml fine salt

activated charcoal powder (Available at pharmacy’s)

bergamot aroma (Available at La Marina foods)

cep aroma (Available at La Marina foods)

Truffle powder (Available at La Marina foods)


Whisk egg whites until they become light and fluffy, add sugar very slowly (tsp at a time) until you have a glossy meringue. Turn off mixer and add citric acid and fine salt, whisk for another 10seconds.


Divide meringue into two parts,



250g Arborio rice (Risotto)

100ml sparkling wine, white (can be replaced with a dry white wine)

1L mushroom stock (can be replaced at home with a convenient stock of your choice)

½ large onion, finely chopped

150g fresh porcini mushrooms, finely chopped

150g portabella mushrooms, finely chopped

80g shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced

40g butter (for mushrooms)

100g butter

2 sprigs thyme

10g basil

80g parmesan cheese, finely grated

20ml olive oil

20g Truffle Paste * optional

*Truffle oil optional to taste


Cream infusion:

½ onion, finely chopped

20 g basil

60g portabelinni mushrooms

50g white button mushrooms

20g butter

250ml cream


Heat all the ingredient together and bring to a simmer, remove from heat and blend together thoroughly. Strain the cream through a fine sieve



Mushroom Stock:

200g carrots (peeled, cut roughly)

10g thyme

80 g onions (cut roughly)

2L water

100g portabelinni mushrooms, chopped roughly

100g fresh porcini mushrooms, chopped roughly

100g white button mushrooms, chopped roughly

10g Truffle paste *optional


Add all ingredients together in a pot, bring to a simmer and slowly cook on a low heat for 30-40 min. Strain the ingredients, and keep the mushroom stock. This can be frozen and kept for later use when making a soup, pie etc.


Equipment needed:

Saucepan large x 1

Pot, large

Frying pan




Measuring jugs

Chefs Knife

Cutting board



Fry onions in a small amount of olive oil, until clear and cooked, add raw Arborio rice, and stir until the rice becomes translucent

In a separate pan, fry mushrooms, thyme and basil together in butter and add seasoning to taste, once cooked, remove the basil & thyme from the mushrooms


Add sparkling wine to the risotto, and cook until wine has completely evaporated (This will help that your risotto doesn’t have a wine after taste)


Add small amounts of mushroom stock at a time (1/2cup), and cook the risotto until it has evaporated. Keep this process going until risotto has almost cooked completely, once risotto is almost cooked add butter (lots of it) and grated parmesan cheese, stir until parmesan has, melted in completely. You want the risotto to still be “Al-dente” – which is an Italian term meaning firm to the bite, you still want a little resistance when biting into the risotto, but also not undercooked.


Chefs Tip: “The perfect risotto” – You can use a simple trick called the smear test, use a piece of the risotto, and smear it on a small plate or clean counter top with a spoon, the center should have a very small white spot in the center. This is the perfect “al-dente” consistency


Once risotto has cooked, fold in a small amount of your mushroom cream and serve.


The consistency of your risotto shouldn’t be too runny, but also not resemble sticky rice, it should slightly move on your plate.


Pickled Mushrooms

80g shiimeji brown

80g shimeji white

8g Basil

20ml White balsamic glaze

80ml Lemon Olive Oil

Maldon salt (Taste)


Cut the tops of the mushrooms, with a 2cm stem, left over.

Whisk together the oil, balsamic glaze and salt. Add the basil.

Add the mushrooms to your pickling liquid, ensuring they are completely covered, for at least 40min (The longer you pickle the mushrooms for, the better flavour.

Equipment needed:

Mixing bowl


Storage container for mushrooms

Measuring spoons

Kitchen Scale


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