Cut the ends of the stalks from two gallons of freshly-gathered mushrooms (the large flaps are best for this purpose, but they should not be worm-eaten); break them into a deep earthen pan, and strew amongst them three-quarters of a pound of salt, reserving the larger portion of it for the top. Let them stand for three, or even four days, and stir them gently once every four and twenty hours; then drain off the liquor without pressing the mushrooms; strain and measure it; put it into a very clean stewpan, and boil it quickly until reduced nearly or quite half. For every quart, allow half an ounce of whole black pepper, and a drachm of mace; or, instead of the pepper, a quarter-teaspoonful (ten grains) of good cayenne; pour the catsup into a clean jug or jar, lay a folded cloth over it, and keep it in a cool place until the following day; pour it gently from the sediment, put it into small bottles, cork them well, and rosin them down. A teaspoonful of salad-oil may be poured into each bottle before it is corked, the better to exclude the air from the catsup: it must be kept in a dry cool place.

Mushrooms, 2 gallons; salt, 3/4 lb.; to macerate three or four days. To each quart of liquor, 1/2 oz. black pepper, or quarter-teaspoonful cayenne; and 1 drachm mace: to be reduced half.

Observation 1

Catsup made thus will not be too salt, nor will the flavour of the mushrooms be overpowered by that of the spices; of which a larger quantity, and a greater variety, can be used at will.

Observation 2

After the mushrooms have stood for three or four days, as we have directed, the whole may be turned into a large stewpan, brought slowly to a boil, and simmered for a few minutes before the liquor is strained off! We think the catsup keeps rather better when this is done, but we recommend only just sufficient simmering to preserve it well. When the mushrooms are crushed, or mashed, as some authors direct, the liquor will necessarily be very thick; it is better to proceed as above, and then to boil the squeezings of the mushrooms with the sediment of the catsup, and sufficient cloves, pepper, allspice, and ginger, to flavour it highly: this second catsup will be found very useful to mix with common thickened sauces, hashes, and stews. In some seasons it is necessary to boil the catsup with the spice a second time after it has been kept for three or four months: this, by way of precaution, can always be done, but it had better then be put into large bottles in the first instance, and stored in the small ones afterwards.

Double Mushroom Catsup

On a gallon of fresh mushrooms strew three ounces of salt, and pour to them a quart of ready-made catsup (that which is a year old will do if it be perfectly good); keep these stirred occasionally for four days, then drain the liquor very dry from the mushrooms, and boil it for fifteen minutes, with an ounce of whole black pepper, a drachm and a half of mace, an ounce of ginger, and three or four grains only of cayenne.

Mushrooms, 1 gallon; salt, 3 ozs.; mushroom catsup, 1 quart; peppercorns, 1 oz.; mace, 1 1/2 drachm; ginger, 1 oz.; cayenne, 3 to 4 grains: 15 minutes.