Head to any decent market's mushroom section and it's hard not to be intimidated. There are so many varieties available — and each is freakier-looking than the last. What, exactly, are you supposed to do with a fungus that seems straight out of a Dr. Seuss book?
The answer: Don't overthink it. Wild mushrooms may look bizarre, but working with them is simple. Select firm ones that have no bruising, wilting, or drying around the edges. Clean off any visible dirt with a dry paper towel (do not rinse them under the tap), pull off any hard or dry stems, and try one of three cooking techniques that we'll walk you through: roasting, hard searing, and sautéing. All of them will work with pretty much any mushroom, bringing out a rich umami flavor that will blow your mind — no chemicals necessary.