---------- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm) v8.02
  
       Title: MUSHROOM ESSENCE
  Categories: Condiments, Vegetables
       Yield: 1 batch
  
       1 oz Boletus mushrooms, dried*
       6 c  Very warm water
       2 md Shallots, peeled & chopped
       6 ea Peppercorns
       1 ea Blade whole mace -=OR=-
       1 pn Ground mace
     1/2 sm Bay leaf
  
   *One oz. = 2/3 cup.  Suggested mushrooms are cepes,
   porcini, Steinpilze or boletes marketed as “Chilean
   dried mushrooms.” Combine mushrooms in a bowl with 4
   cups very warm water.  Push them under the surface,
   weight them with a saucer, and let them soak overnight
   or for at least 6 hours, until they are very soft.
   Stir them occasionally.
   Lift mushrooms from the liquid with a slotted spoon
   (save the liquid) and chop them fine, saving as much
   juice as possible.  Combine them with the remaining 2
   cups water in a saucepan, bring them to a simmer, and
   simmer them, covered, for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, to
   clear the soaking liquid of grit, pour it carefully
   into a bowl, leaving behind the sediment - this is
   certain to be sandy. Let the liquid settle again and
   again pour it off; repeat, if necessary, to be sure
   any grit has been left behind. Pour the simmered
   mushrooms and their liquid into a sieve set over a
   bowl and lined with fine nylon net or two layers of
   dampened cheesecloth. Press hard on the mushrooms to
   extract all possible liquid; discard the debris. Let
   this second batch of liquid settle, then decant it as
   described for the soaking liquid; repeat if necessary.
   Combine the two batches of liquid with the shallots,
   peppercorns, mace and bay leaf in a saucepan.  Bring
   the liquid to a boil over medium-high heat and simmer
   it briskly, uncovered, until it has reduced to 2 cups.
   Strain out the solids and let the concentrated liquid
   settle for one last time - we're still on the track of
   any sand that may remain. Decant the cooled essence,
   then freeze it in an ice-cube tray. Remove the cubes
   from the tray and store them in an airtight freezer
   container. Keeps for up to a year in the freezer.
   Yield: 16 cubes, about 2 tb. each.
  
 -----