Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Woodsy Type

A couple weeks ago I went to the Dupont Farmers' Market with a couple friends in the early morning. This was not usual because one of the friends (Nina) is NOT a morning person. But the other friend (Sarah) was, so Nina sacrificed for her visit to town. They are good friends.
At the market that day I saw something I had only seen in a blog post before: hen of the woods, also known as maitake mushrooms. They were going for $8 a paltry pint, which sounded like a deal because it was less than the $10 every other pint cost. Plus, they were just so interesting! Then Sarah got one, so I had to follow suit, no excuses.
La mise en scene
Then the poor thing waited in my fridge in its paper bag for a whole week. I felt like a bad mother! I had to do something by the following Sunday, and act I did. After some searching (never being one to go into battle unarmed), I found a likely candidate recipe, but it didn't knock my socks off in terms of a meal, so I embellished. You know, like I never do usually.

I tried to take the methods from that recipe and amp it up with another recipe, from one of my favorite cookbooks by Judith Jones, for a mushroom risotto. It is not unlike most risotto recipes, so I won't go into the tweaking, just to say I didn't embellish it too much because I wanted the special mushroom flavor to shine brightest.

It was pretty good. I think I may not have risotto down, because the rice seemed a bit overblown, maybe overcooked? Does it ever get so full of moisture it just explodes? Like that.

Mushroom, olive oil, salt = yum

I made enough for 3 tidy servings, bringing some to work, and the aroma in the office made it seem like I had it better than I did. I guess I'm just one for that woodsy type!

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