Archive for November, 2009

Black Friday Find: Inspiration Presentation

Black Friday FunThis particular MC editor had occasion to be in rural southern California for “feast week” as it is affectionately called by loved ones.  Recent years have found me avoiding the Black Friday sales, opting instead for online shopping.

Given the chance to pair bargains with a new town though and I’ll gladly go peruse. This is how I found myself at eye level with a platter worth a thousand plates at Rains department store in “downtown” Ojai.

The inscription says “Mushroom. Enjoy Nature’s Handmade Art.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Weekly Links: Mushroom News from Around the Web

Get healthy Tri-State: Keep the comfort, lose the calories The Herald-Dispatch knows that cold winter has many of us reaching for warm comfort foods like chili, pasta and beef dishes. While that sounds like the right food to trigger a warm feeling, consuming so much saturated fat isn’t your healthiest option. If you swap out mushrooms instead of meat in your comfort dishes you’ll find yourself with a source of ergothioneine—a compound that helps prevent plaque from forming in arteries. Now that’s comforting way to warm up this season!

Where to trim fat and calories at the Thanksgiving feast During and after your Thanksgiving feast, cutting the fat and extra calories from your holiday meals doesn’t mean cutting the taste. Many of us try to feel less guilty by eating vegetable or fruit side dishes, but forget that adding a stick of butter for flavor doesn’t help our waists much. The Dallas Morning News shares ways to enjoy your holiday and weekend indulgence, like delicious stuffing, while still being conscious of where its going.

Morels are very special mushrooms With such a wide variety of mushrooms to choose from—porcinis, trompettes, chanterelles, maitake and morels—it can be hard to pick a favorite. It can be even more daunting to find some of the more rare varieties that come with a higher price tag. If you do happen to use these special varieties while cooking or enjoy them while dining out, Olive Nation’s blog can help you choose the right pairing for each type. They offer suggestions for using the right sauce, vegetable or wine. The blog also includes tips for handling and preparation.

Tuna and Mushroom Potato Pot Pie Does your family have a favorite pie recipe that’s become a tradition around the dinner table? Bits of Taste was introduced to traditional pies by her mother-in-law and took a chance on making a modern version that not only added fiber to her family’s diet, but was also suitable for a picky eater. For fans of the traditional shepherd’s pie, this recipe is similar except that she has swapped minced mutton or beef for a healthier tuna.

Preventing The Swine Flu: A Comprehensive Approach There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to keeping everyone healthy and immune to influenza according to Mark Hyman, MD, at the The Huffington Post. Not everyone will find the same results from vaccines and treatments, thus the best approach is one that involves keeping healthy through a variety of means.  Hyman provides an overview of things to consider when getting a vaccine and offers alternative ways that support your immune system naturally, such as immune-enhancing mushrooms.

Second time around: What to do with those Thanksgiving leftovers If you find yourself in abundance of turkey leftovers don’t think that the most exciting use for a turkey is over. has plenty of ideas for re-using leftovers that will still be as good as the original holiday meal. Whether you want to bake, throw together a quick pasta or warm up with soup, has you covered through the weekend of leftovers.

Recipes of the Week: Thanksgiving Extravaganza

Here’s a post I’ve been looking forward to for a few weeks- the one dedicated to my favorite holiday.  A full day dedicated to family and feasting is a dream come true in my book.  That being said, for as many different types of families to be represented tomorrow, there about as many iterations of the traditional Thanksgiving meal.

Lucky for all of us, mushrooms have a place on the table no matter where you end up. A few of a favorite mushroom masterpieces that even a turkey could love below:

Vegan Thanksgiving Pot Pies

A Mini Vegan Pot Pie with Mushroom Gravy from Vegan Dad.

GF Thanksgiving

Gluten Free Vegetarian Thanksgiving with more savory mushroom gravy from Wheatless and Meatless (by way of The Examiner).

Smart Mouth Peas and Creminis

A colorful side dish for the table from A Smart Mouth.  Crisp green peas with sauteed cremini mushrooms and mint make for a great twist on a classic combo.

Recipe GirlMushrooms IN the turkey by way of some beautiful stuffing from Recipe Girl.  Don’t forget to try out the mushroom dressing recipe from Umami Girl we featured last week for a different take!

Photo Credit: Kalyn's Kitchen

Another glorious combination- roasted carrots with mushrooms from Kalyn’s Kitchen.  Look at the color here and tell that doesn’t just shout “feast!” to you.

Photo Credit: The Wednesday Chef

This one is for the Sunday after Thanksgiving. You’ve exhausted your leftovers (or you’re just tired of eating them).  You need something light, with a totally different flavor profile. Enter The Wednesday Chef with her take on Mark Bittman’s Bok Choy with Shiitakes and Oyster Sauce. No fuss and delicious- perfect way to recover from a few days of dishes and gluttony.

Forgive me for one “mushy” moment when I say thanks in honor of Thanksgiving. The whole team at the Mushroom Council is grateful for you guys. Enjoy your holidays!

Mushrooms in the Morning

As we begin to dig our wrists into a huge holiday week in the US, I’m reminded of a an oft-forgotten piece: Thanksgiving breakfast.  A reminder by the ever-mindful Chowmama put a few items in perspective for me and I think this year I’ve finally learned my lesson.

You see, I look forward to Thanksgiving all year. I train for it like an athlete and that day I want to ensure every piece of prep that could be done ahead is and everything else will mobilize like a well-oiled (and buttered) machine into the oven, onto the stovetop, out of the fridge and onto the cooling rack (which may or may not be on top of the microwave because we’ve plum run out of counter space). In previous years I would all but fast on the day of to prime my appetite for the main event, the feast of feasts.

What it usually means? Hen-pecking at the stuffing while the bird cooks, over-noshing on cheese and crackers when they finally make their appearance pre-dinner and generally being exhausted before the turkey is even carved because I’m as out of adrenaline as I am counters.

Not so this year. Two bloggers have given me some healthy, filling breakfast ideas to charge me up first thing on the big day and prime my tastebuds for many good things to come.

Jennifer Causey for Simply Breakfast

Simply Breakfast is a lovely blog providing daily inspiration for the beginning bites of your day. Lovely snaps and presentation, always.

Linda for One Scoop at a Time

This plate looks quite happy to me and it covers all its bases.  The most exciting base for us being Linda‘s simple chard and mushroom saute. Linda actually made a pita with the saute for herself but I couldn’t resist this straightforward presentation and the ability to cook it all up using one pan if you so choose. As the fastest dish-dirtier in the (Mid)West on Thanksgiving or any day, I so choose.

Do you have any other straightforward ideas for mushrooms in the morning? Thanksgiving breakfast traditions?

Weekly Links: Mushroom News from Around the Web

Barbeque mushrooms: An incredible edible egg-cup We typically don’t think of including mushrooms in our everyday breakfast meals. When we see mushrooms at breakfast, its usually the “meat” of a breakfast burrito or a savory addition to an omelet. Well, its time to spruce up your mushroom breakfasts with this barbecue idea from The Home of Eggs. This barbecue mushroom egg recipe even includes a YouTube clip to show you how easy it is to grill a mushroom on your own.

Nature’s Hidden Source of Vitamin D Why is Vitamin D so important to our health? Is the sun the only source of Vitamin D? The Seattle PI answers these questions in their latest post and shares an alternative way to find Vitamin D when we’re limited on sun exposure. The post even includes a recipe for ginger shiitake rice adapted from Gourmet Magazine. Yum.

15 best (and worst) foods for immunity It’s officially cold and flu season—so how are you keeping yourself healthy? Have you thought about how  your diet may make you a germ magnet? MSNBC listed the 15 best and worst foods for your immune system based on their germ-killing abilities. Check them out and stay healthy everyone.

Seriously Meatless: Wild Mushroom Stuffing Thanksgiving is a week away! If you’re having food safety concerns or stressing over making a meal that’ll please a crowd of both vegetarians and omnivores, check out Serious Eats’ stuffing. It’s made outside of the turkey and serves up to 8 people.

Recipe ideas that use your Thanksgiving leftovers Some say that the best part of Thanksgiving is the leftovers. If you find yourself with plates of extra food after the holiday, check out My San Antonio’s ideas for what to do with those leftovers. It’s recipes for using up turkey, potatoes, cranberries and stuffing which sound just as delicious as the original meal itself!