If you’re looking for ways to improve your diet this year, consider adding dried mushrooms to the menu. These nutritional powerhouses are low in calories and packed with flavor. You might assume that fresh mushrooms are always better. However, dried mushrooms boast a deliciously concentrated flavor that can put the finishing touch on many different dishes. Choose the right dried mushrooms. There is no set-in-stone rule for pairing certain types of dried mushrooms with certain dishes. However, if you’re new to cooking with mushrooms, you can’t go wrong with dried shiitakes. These are excellent for Asian dishes like stir fries. Porcini mushrooms, which are Italian, are perfect for risottos. Use chanterelles in French sauces and classic dishes like omelets. You should also feel free to combine different mushrooms. Shiitakes pair well with many other varieties. Rehydrate the dried mushrooms. If you’re using dried mushrooms in a soup or stew, there is no need to rehydrate them in advance. Just give them a quick rinse—some varieties like morels can harbor sand—and toss them into the soup pot. If you aren’t using the mushrooms in a soup, you can rehydrate them by soaking them for several hours in room temperature water. The mushrooms will be fully rehydrated when they become soft. If you’re in a hurry, you can rehydrate them in boiling water. Place the mushrooms in a heatproof bowl and pour a few cups of boiling water over them. Place a small plate on top to fully submerge the mushrooms. Soak them for about 20 minutes, or until they are plump and soft. Use the mushroom “broth.” The water you use to rehydrate the mushrooms can be used in various dishes. After removing the mushrooms, strain the water through a sieve. Add the flavorful liquid to risotto, sauces, or soups. You can also freeze the liquid to use later. You’ll find a wide assortment of delicious ingredients at Steamboat Meat & Seafood Co. In addition to their locally famous deli menu, this company retails specialty items like mushrooms, truffles, and gourmet cheese. If you have any questions, you can call a friendly associate in Steamboat Springs at (970) 879-3504.