I use gigantic King Oyster Mushrooms and shred them on a mandoline slicer. (A coarse food processor shredding blade also works, you want long strands, not finely minced mushroom mush!)
This really won't work so well with other mushrooms, you're going to need the firm, but easy-to-shred, texture of the giant King Oysters.
If you've never worked with them, they're great big things - roughly the size and shape of a chicken drumstick, usually found in your local Asian Market or better-stocked grocery stores.
Seriously? Prep takes a little while, (i.e., lots of wordy directions), but follow along, I promise, it's the EASIEST way to impress non-vegans ever!
(And, they're are a great source of protein, vitamin B6, folate, iron, magnesium, zinc, dietary fiber, riboflavin, phosphorus, potassium, and copper too, in case that part's important to you!)
And did I mention, they're ridiculously CHEAP!
When it's all cooked up, the texture is a little softer than chicken, but seriously, who's comparing things that closely? Even the DIE-HARD meat-lovers I know will happily gobble up an entire pan full of these!
The umami caramelized-mushroom and BBQ flavor and hearty texture ends up looking and tasting deliciously shreddy-meaty-BBQ-y.
4 King Oyster Mushrooms, (they're mostly a big stem - the size of a large chicken drumstick or larger (sorry for the comparison but that's what they remind me of!!)2 Tb. vegan margarine
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 large sweet onion, very thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups favorite BBQ sauce
1/2 cup water
Finely shred the mushrooms using the finest shred, matchstick or julienne blade on your Mandoline Slicer; You want toothpick-thin slices.
If you have a food processor with a feed chute and shredder blade, you can use that too.
Melt margarine in a large skillet, add shredded mushrooms, onions and salt; Saute on med-high (as high as you're comfortable with) until the mushroom and onion get bits or brown on them. Add a bit more margarine if needed so things don't burn.
Reduce heat, and cook, COVERED over medium, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms release liquid and become juicy, about 10 - 15 minutes.
Continue to simmer, covered, until vegetables are soft and tender, about another 10 minutes. (Add a couple Tbsp. water if it isn't still a bit "juicy").
Stir in BBQ sauce and water, remove cover and simmer another 10 minutes or as long as needed to evaporate sauce a bit.
When sauce has thickened, turn heat to high and stir frequently/watch closely until extra moisture evaporates and mixture becomes thick and sticky.
Allow to "stick" and caramelize a bit, but scrape pan to prevent mixture from actually burning.
Serve over hot sourdough toast, burger buns (or try with a hearty, non-sweet, rustic raisin bread like I did.) Coleslaw is a nice touch here too!