Friday, October 23, 2009


It's that time of year again when there are mushrooms EVERYWHERE! The Burke Gilman Trail has a veritable plethora of mushrooms popping up along its edges. I even found some edible ones! Unfortunately, I didn't have my camera to catch these guys in the ground, but here they are on my kitchen counter getting ready to be eaten:

Coprinus comatus, a.k.a. the Shaggy Mane

One characteristic of Coprinuses is that they deliquesce, that is, they decay by melting into ink rather quickly. And by quickly I mean a few hours sometimes, so the window of opportunity to find these guys, cook, and eat them is fairly short. Once a mushroom begins to decay, it's inedible, just like other foods; rotten is no good! Anyway, as soon as I picked these Coprinuses, I brought them home, cut them in half, made some tempura batter, and set about frying them in bacon grease.

They were interesting. They didn't really have any flavor, or perhaps a delicate one that got overpowered by the tempura/bacon grease. The texture was fasinating though. They were kinda slimy and stringy, but firm and tender at the same time. It had sort of a calamari-like quality to it. One cookbook describes them as "not slimy like okra, but delicious like octopus" - That's pretty much it. I want to try sauteing them next time.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Early Autumn Update

School has started and I've become a big fan on sandwiches with Tall Grass Bakery bread, farmers market apples, Stumptown Kenyan coffees, and TeaCup imperial afternoon tea. One particularly amazing thing I must note though is Washington ginger! Yes, apparently the climate out in Wapato, WA at Mair Farm-Taki is suitable to grow fresh ginger!! I've never had fresh ginger before, it's almost like a super spicy apple and good for anything and everything! It's much prettier than the that dried out brown stuff we all know. This ginger is almost translucent white, with highlights of rich pink and vibrant green. Incredible. I'll try to get some pictures of it up here later.