portobello mushroom surprise

I have a thing for mushrooms. They fall in between plant and animal, they wear cute little hats, well sometimes not so little…and they have strong personalities.

My friend Peter L. sent me a chantrelle photo…his fief has three chantrelle patches, so  lucky to have proper wild mushrooms growning on one’s land.

Taj Mahovel has plenty mushrooms growing underfoot thanks to the tree-bark strewn around to keep weeds down. Teams of brown derbie’d “fun guys” huddle about after a rain, ready for…who knows? They seem to love a crowd… what goes on in the mind of mushrooms?

I know that mushrooms take people, just as the opposite is true. When mushrooms take people they usually bring them all the way out of life.

I am afraid this realy isn’t blog material.

Let me get to the mushrooms…they were sitting neat and massive on top of waxed cardboard boxes punched flat, at my Favorite Food Supply (back door of course).

I had the banjo with me coz I was going to Molly’s place for a couple hours of old time, wine and one artistic little boy making wonderful drawings while mom & dad played fiddle and banjo. Behind the supermarket there is a place where a food-scavenger can select the best veggies without detection, and it was there that I found those shrooms,they had to weigh about four ounces each…shoved them in my bag along with three loaves of bread, Beckmanns (personal favorite since they sponsor the Santa Cruise for Battered Women, a small benefit Wombats produced since 1983 ) sourdough ….two pints of organo-strawberries, and a single organic tomato.

Our larder is crammed. Piles of orphan veggies and fruits are uneaten, but instead of landfiller, it becomes worm food. And then compost. We have around five hundred pounds of good compost, and it’s. unscented, rich brown , decorated with a few avocado trees that refuse to give up ….those avo-pits are among the most tenacious seeds I’ve encountered. Next ingredient I’l ladd: a dozen bin-bags (pardon the briton babble, i’m indulging in a dialect) full of good oak leaves from neighbors.

Loaded wth mushrooms, bread, etc I roll toward the House of Thursday Music. The scent of dinner is on the air at several houses I pass. Mol’s yard is a green pocket of tranquility with roses and ivy all around, and for once the two loud dogs aren’t there to sound the alarum.

Music group is tuning up when I arrive at 7:40 on this dark foggy evening. Let myself in, there are only four musicians there, this is the first time I’ve been on time in …three years maybe. I smell too strong, the hill up to their house is maybe thirty vertical feet but it’s hard because it’s dark, I’m loaded with instrument and food, and I’m tired already.

Clean and hull strawberries. Do something about my fragrance. Fry two of the three huge Portobellos , and admire how they go from huge brown styrofoam things to softer rubbery butter scented (and a splash of white wine) slices of mycological marvelousness.
Oh, man, girl not only are you tired, you are…blithering. Sign off?
There were only two of us, Jen and I, scooping droopy mushroom slivers into our mouths.

It’s true that the provenance was dubious but when you fry something in a pan, doesn’t that purify it, redeem it, and aren’t we doing the planet a favor by ingesting it so we can type a hundred words, rather than it going to Marin Sanitary, which keeps no blog about itself.

I am a little tired, it’s true. I’m signing off.

Will take a picture of bounty one of these nights.

Meantime, slow down and brew some tea, try a new kind. Sit a spell. And follow no commands from disembodied food-blogging bullies.


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