Whenever I purchase fresh chanterelles, I usually sort them according to their size, using the largest mushrooms for sauces, ragouts, pies, etc, and the tiny ones for making various pickles, like the one described below.
1½ l fresh chanterelles (preferably small-sized)
100 ml water
50 ml spirit vinegar (10 %)
small knob of fresh ginger
100 ml sugar
1 - 2 bay leaves
½ cinnamon stick
½ tbsp yellow mustard seeds
Clean the chanterelles by gently brushing off and picking out the largest twigs, pine needles, bits of moss etc. Leave the tiny mushrooms whole. If you only have normal to large-sized chanterelles,
cut them in small pieces.
Heat a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook them stirring frequently, until most of the liquid they have released has evaporated.
Pour the mushrooms in a bowl and set aside.
Prepare the marinade. Cut the onion half in wedges and peel the knob of ginger. Place the water, vinegar, onion, ginger, sugar and other spices in a stainless steel saucepan.
Bring the mixture to the boil and cook briskly for a couple of minutes. Pour the hot liquid through a sieve over the mushrooms in the bowl and mix.
Spoon the mushrooms with the marinade in clean glass jars, sterilized with boiling water. Make sure that the pickling liquid entirely covers the mushrooms. Close the jars with sterilized lids. Let the pickles cool down and store in refrigerator.
Unopened, they should keep for several months, even years.
After about two weeks the pickled chanterelles will be ready to eat. Serve them as a piquant accompaniment for various meat, fish or vegetable dishes, spread on sandwiches, or as a part of cold hors d'uvre or buffet service, like the Russian zakuski or the Scandinavian smörgåsbord.
Recipe source: adapted from "Sienipikkelssi (marinoidut sienet)", Nylén, Bo (1987) Herkulliset ruokasienet. Trans. Kirsi Tanner. Jyväskylä: Gummerus.