Shrooms and String Theory
As Gordon and I BOTH lay flat on our backs on ice (his a result of the story below, and mine a result of stubbornness and stupidity) we are fondly remembering our short trip last week to see Dwight Yoakam who didn’t show up (illness) then a short visit to one of our favorite places on earth – Red River Gorge. Shhh. I really DON’T want to get the word out – this place is unspoiled and wild and we want to keep it that way.
We have our favorite trails – some are mine, some are his – and this time we really just walked a few of the short ones and didn’t do any serious hiking. One of the beautiful aspects of any walk in nature is you can take that walk one thousand times and you will always see something new every time. This time, on Tar Kiln Trail, I caught my first delightful glimpse of a red mushroom. It was just brilliant, and I thought to myself how lucky am I! and then, right next to it I spotted a pink mushroom – first sighting ever!
Feeling a bit like Alice and the Rabbit Hole, I slowed down and wandered off the path (Gordon kept forging ahead – he likes to clip along and I like to stop and smell the granite as he likes to put it). I began to look down instead of ahead and as I slowed and wandered (to a literal crawl on my hands and knees), a whole new world appeared before me – a reminder, once again, of the circle of life and String Theory. This is a world teeming with energy and movement – you just have to be still to be aware of it. The undergrowth, in its varying degrees of decay, was producing life and energy to nourish what was infant and just emerging.
Mushrooms are a most delicious fungi – the variety of edibles is practically unending and each has its own fragrance and taste profile. Mushrooms are an excellent source of umami – the often undefinable protein profile that can give a dish its depth of flavor. This week I’m making a client favorite: Mesquite Roasted Chicken with some roasted wild mushrooms, artichokes and spinach. It is indeed mushroom season, but even if it wasn’t, I would wish for you a wandering eye, and a slow enough gait that you can indeed smell the granite (and find the mushrooms) because, as I said previously, there is NO shortcut to mushrooms! (Thank you J.R.R. Tolkien for inspiring the title of this newsletter).
A Note From Chef Lori
Can you BELIEVE ’tis almost the season?!? Think about your holiday party NOW…we’re excited to party with you but Lula only has two hands!!
Photo courtesy of ME – an edible Cauliflower Mushroom!
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