While it is more traditional to make confit from the meat of duck or turkey legs, there really are no hard rules as to what one can preserve using this method.
I often keep a jar of garlic confit on hand for use on pizzas and pastas, and I really need to do the same with tomatoes when they come into season next year. Even when the main element of the confit gets used up, you’re left with an aromatic oil that you can continue to make use of in any number of ways. So really…confit is one of the best Twofers you can whip up in the kitchen.
Coyote Mint, on the other hand, is a different matter altogether. First off, it’s predominantly found only in California (with some occurring in Southern Oregon). Secondly, it’s a mint in name only: many remark that it’s an acquired taste and I often hear it described as medicinally flavored. However, this wild herb can add an unusual, herby punch to many dishes when used correctly. A simple rule that works well for me is to think of Coyote Mint as more of an unusual oregano.
Mushroom Confit with Garlic and Coyote Mint
PREP TIME: 10 MINUTES ● COOK TIME: 1-2 HOURS
- 1½ pounds Mushrooms
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon Coyote Mint leaves
- Olive oil, to cover
- Thoroughly sterilize your jar(s) and lids in boiling water.
- If you have not already done so, clean your mushrooms thoroughly, then chop them into ½ inch dice.
- Place them into a large saucepan and add the smashed garlic cloves, salt and Coyote Mint.
- Pour enough olive oil into the pan to thoroughly cover everything. Give it a good stir to ensure that things are evenly mixed.
- Place the pan on a burner over medium heat for a few minutes or until you notice that the oil has reached a slight simmer. Do not allow it to come to a boil.
- Turn the heat on the burner to medium-low and allow the mixture to poach in the oil for a minimum of one hour or up to as long as two hours, stirring occasionally.
- Remove the pan from heat and allow the mushrooms to cool to room temperature in the oil.
- Take a clean wide mouth jar and use a fine mesh strainer to fish the mushrooms out of the pan and into the jar. Fill the jar but be certain to leave at least a one inch gap at the top. Pour the oil from the pan over the mushrooms ensuring to cover them all.
- Pour any other remaining aromatic oil into a separate widemouth jar to use for drizzling onto pizzas, pastas, marinades, vinaigrettes, etc.
- Store the jarred, oil covered mushrooms in the fridge for up to two weeks. Keep your aromatic oil in a cool, dry place tightly sealed…when stored properly, your oil can last for several weeks.
I used a rather large Porcini for this batch of Mushroom Confit with Garlic and Coyote Mint, but any number of other fungi would work nicely. However, wild ‘shrooms will undoubtedly result in a more flavorful condiment and/or flavored oil than store bought mushrooms. If the mushrooms you have are small enough, you could choose to leave them whole and either use the finished product sparingly or all of it as a side dish unto itself.
And don’t sweat it if you can’t get your hands on Coyote Mint…thyme or oregano would make perfectly acceptable substitutes.