Friday, June 4, 2010
When Life Gives You Mushrooms
A friend whose husband works at an organic farm recently asked if I liked mushrooms. Of course, the answer to this is a resounding "yes." I like mushrooms like cats like cheerfully destroying the only thing that you have left that reminds you of your grandfather.
So the next day she came in with a bag stuffed full of king oyster mushrooms. "I hate mushrooms," she said, "and my husband is allergic. These were the leftovers that his farm couldn't sell. They give them away to the workers, and if you don't take them, no one will."
Of course, with king oysters currently fetching $18.99 a pound at Rainbow Grocery, I am going to gleefully say yes to this offer of a Big Bag O' Fungus. Of course, now the obvious question becomes, what do you do with a big old pile of free mushrooms?
Fortunately Eric Tucker of Millennium has answered this question on page 151 of his cookbook, "The Artful Vegan." He suggests "Oyster Mushroom and Tofu Remolade Po' Boy," which calls for a few metric tonnes of mushrooms.
Of course cooking from The Artful Vegan can sometimes be tricky as the recipes tend to unfold like those Matrushkas, those little Russian nesting dolls, with layer upon layer of awesome. What at first seems simple, turns into a mystery, wrapped in a riddle, surrounded by an enigma. Or in this case, "Millennium Oil Braised Garlic" (page 212,) wrapped in a few cups of "Tofu Aoili" (page 213,) surrounded by aforementioned Remolade (page 151) and you find yourself in the kitchen for two and a half hours for want of a sandwich.
But once those mushrooms are dipped in that aoili and then in breadcrumbs and dry fried:
OH, what a wonderful sandwich they make! (Seen here minus an ecstatic bite taken by Optimistic.)