Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Spring porcinis

One of the really lovely things about living in the pacific northwest is the great range of the foraging opportunities we have. We can walk out into natural areas and collect mushrooms, berries of all kinds, fiddle heads, clams, oysters, and the list goes on.
The other day a friend found good spring porcinis in the Cle Elum area, and was kind enough to share the harvest. Yes, this is a good kind of friend to have.

 Porcinis are nutty, and earthy, and delicious. Their fat stems are tender and meaty.

I've learned to brown the sliced mushrooms in small batches. Mushrooms contain so much water, that if you cover the pan, they will end up boiling in their own juices, rather than browning. The difference in flavor and texture is huge.

I ended up eating most of the porcinis hot out of the pan (I couldn't help myself). The rest I tossed with pasta and a white wine and butter sauce. The dish needed something more, so I went out to the garden and picked some arugula. Then threw it in the hot pasta with mushrooms. The peppery greens wilted a bit under the heat, which was really nice. The arugula added a nice dimension to the dish. Dinner was good.

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